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S A L A D I N 



(1137— 1193 A.n.). 

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'S A L AD I N'; 



(1 137— 1 193 A.D.) 


IMAM, grand kAdI of the MOSLEMS, 


Ibn Rafi, Ibn Temim, generally known by THE Surname of Ibn Sheddad, 
Kadi of the fortified City of Aleppo, 

WITH the permission OF 

Ebe (Ikbalit) Commander of tbe faitbtul. 

4!Ba)0 C§ob hear hie yragers, ani) atoarb him f arabise for his resting-plare anb abiobc ! 



Preface . . . xi 

Introduction ....... xiii 

Preface ....... i 

PART 1. 


I. What I have observed of Salah ed-Din's attachment to 
the principles of religion, and his respect for every part 

of the holy law ...... 5 

11. His love of justice . . . . . • H 

III. Some instances of his generosity . . . .18 

IV. His valour and intrepidity — may God hallow his soul ! . 20 
V. Of his zeal in fighting in God's cause . . - -3 

■ VI. Of his patience, and of his trust in the mercy of God . 27 

VII. Instances of his kindness and tolerance . . -33 

VIII. His care to be polite . . . . -38 



I. His first campaign in Egypt, in which he ser\ cd under 

his uncLe, Asad ed-Din (Shirkiih) . . .46 

II. Second expedition into Egypt, called the^^event of el- 

Babein ....... 49 

III. Asad ed-Din's third e.xpedition into Egypt, and conquest 

of that country . . . . . -51 



IV. Death of Asad ed-Din. The chief authority 

devolves upon the Sultan (Salah ed-Din) . • 5S 

V. The expedition of the Franks against Damietta, 

which may God preserve ! . . . • 5^ 

VI. Relates how he met his father . . • 59 

VII. Death of el-'Adid . . . . .61 

VIII. First expedition undertaken by the Sultan out of 

Egypt .. . . . . .62 

IX. Death of Nejm ed-Din (Ayub), the Sultan's father . 63 
X. Death of Nur ed-Din Mahmud, son of Zenghi — 

• may the mercy of God be upon him ! . -65 

XI. Treachery of el-Kenz at Aswan in the year 570 

(A.D. 1 174— 1 175) 65 

XII. The Franks attack the defences of Alexandria — 

may God protect it ! . . . .66 

XIII. The Sultan goes into Syria and takes possession of 

Damascus . . . . . 67 

XIV. Seif ed-Din sends his brother 'Izz ed-Din to oppose 

the Sultan ...... 70 

XV. Seif ed-Din himself sets out against the Sultan . 71 
' XVI. Defeat sustained at Ramla . . . -75 

XVII. The Sultan returns into Syria . . -77 

XVHI. Death of el-Melek es-Saleh. 'Izz ed-Din enters 

Aleppo . . . . . -79 

XIX. 'Izz ed-Din exchanges (Aleppo) for the territory of 

his brother, 'I mad ed-Din Zenghi . . .80 

XX. The Sultan returns from Egypt . .81 

XXI. The Sultan appears (once more) before Mosul 83 

XXII. The action taken by Shah-Armen, Prince of Khelat 84 

XXIII. The Sultan returns to Syria . . .86 

K. XXIV. Expedition to 'Ain Jalut . . . .88 

XXV. He undertakes an expedition against el-Kerak 91 

XXVI. He gives the city of Aleppo to his brother, el-Melek 

el-'Adel . . . . . ■ 9- 

XXVII. Our deputation arrives at the Sultan's Court . 94 

XXVIII. The Sultan's second expedition against el-Kerak ». 95 

XXIX. The Sultan's second expedition against Mosul 98 

XXX. Death of Shah-Armen, Prince of Khelit . 100 

XXXI. The people of Mosul make peace with the Sultan 102 

XXX 11. The Sultan returns to Syria . 103 

XXXIII. El-Melek el-'Adel goes into Egypt, and el-Melek 

ez-Z&her returns to Aleppo . . . .104 

XXXIV. The Sultan makes preparations for an expedition 

against el-Kerak . . • .108 



XXXV. Account of the battle of Hattin, an auspicious day 
for the faithful .... 

XXXVI. Taking of the Holy City (el-Kuds esh-Sherif) 
XXXVII. His attempt on Tyre . 
XXXVIII. Destruction of the fleet 
XXXIX. He lays siege tp Kaukab 

XL. He enters the lands of the upper sea-coast, and 

takes Laodicea, Jebela, and other cities 

XLI. Capture of Jebela and Laodicea 

XLII. Capture of SahyCin 

XLIII. Capture of Bekas 

XLIV. Capture of Burzia 

XLV. Capture of Derbesak 

XLVI. Capture of Baghras 

XLVII. Capture of Safed 

XLVIII. Capture of Kaukab 

XLIX. The Sultan marches against Shakif Arnun. This 

expedition immediately preceded the events at 

^^,.^ Acre ....... 

L. The Franks collect their troops to march upon Acre 
LI. The skirmish in which Aibek el-Akhresh testified 

(for the faith) 

LII. A second skirmish, in which a number of Moslem 

foot-soldiers earn martyrdom 

LI 1 1. The Sultan makes all speed to reach Acre. His 

LIV. Another skirmish 
LV. The Lord of Shakif is made prisoner. Cause of his 
arrest .... 

LVI. The war at Acre 
LVII. The Moslems break through to Acre 
LVI 1 1. The army withdraws to Tell el-'Aiadiya 
LIX. Battle between the Arabs and the enemy 

LX. The great battle of Acre 
LXI. We receive tidings concerning the King of the 
Germans ..... 

LXI I. Skirmish on the sands by the river-bank at Acre 
LXIIL Death of Doctor 'Aisa 
LXIV. Surrender of esh-Shakif 
LXV. An anecdote . . . . . 

LXVI. Arrival of the Khalifs ambassador . 
LXVII. Of the good fortune granted to el-Melek ez-Zaher 
the Sultan's son 

1 20 











LXVIII. Arrival of 'I mad ed-Din Zenghi, Prince of Sinjar, 

, and of several other chieftains . . .180 

LXIX. Arrival of the Moslem fleet at Acre . . 181 

LXX. Tidings of the King of the Germans . .182 

LXXI. Contents of a letter received from the Armenian 

Catholicos . . . . .185 

LXXI I. The troops march towards the frontier to meet the 

King of the Germans .... 189 

LXXI 1 1. Account of the King of the Germans continued . 191 

LXXIV. The battle fought by el-'Adel . . . 193 

LXXV. Arrival of Count Henry . . . . 197 

LXXVI. A letter is received from Constantinople— may God 

grant us the conquest of that city ! . .198 

LXXVII. Burning of the enemy's mangonels . . . 202 

LXXVI II. Stratagem, by means of which a large ship from 
Beirut succeeded in making her way into the 
harbour . . . . . , 204 

LXXIX. Account of 'Aisa the swimmer . . . 205 

LXXX. Firing of the mangonels .... 206 

LXXXI. Account of the movements of the King of the 
Germans continued. Stratagem employed by 
the Marquis . . . . . zoy 

LXXXI I. Ships arrive from Egypt .... 209 

LXXXIII. The Franks besiege the Fly-tOAver . . . 210 

LXXXI V. Junction between the Germans and the enemy's 

army . . . . . .212 

LXXXV. The ram and other machines of war are burnt . 215 
LXXXVI. Adventure of Mo'ezz ed-Din . . .219 

LXXXVI I. 'Imad ed-Din requests leave to depart . . 222 

LXXXVI 1 1. The enemy leave their camp and go as far as the 

spring head ..... 223 

LXXXIX. Fight at the ambush .... 229 

XC. The return of the army after the Holy War . 232 

XCI. The Sultan relieves the garrison of the city . 233 

XCIL Several ships belonging to the enemy are cap- 
tured ...... 235 

XCIII. Death of the son of the King of the Germans . 236 
XCIV. Asad ed- Din's expedition . . . . 237 

XCV. Other events in this year .... 238 

XCVI. Arrival of Moslem troops and of the King of 
France . . . . . 

XCVII. A strange occurrence of good omen 
XCVI II. Account of the King of England 




XCIX. Account of the child 

C. The Sultan removes to the hill of el-'Ayadiya 
CI. The city is reduced to the direst straits 
CII. Arrival of the King of England 
cm. A Moslem vessel sunk — third sign of the approach 

ing fall of the city 
CIV. A huge moving tower is set on fire . 
CV. Various occurrences .... 

CVI. The Marquis (Conrad of Montferrat) takes flight 
to Tyre ..... 

CVI I. Arrival of the latest contingents for the Moslem 
army ..... 

CVI 1 1. The Franks send an ambassador to the Sultan 
CIX. The besiegers make a furious attack on the city 
and reduce it to the last extremity 
ex. The city is reduced to the last extremity, and the 
garrison open negotiations with the Franks 
CXI. We receive letters from the city 
CXI I. Treaty concluded by the besieged, by which their 

lives are preserved 
CXI 1 1. The enemy takes possession of Acre 
CXIV. An encounter takes place during the interval 
CXV. Arrival of Ibn Barik (from Acre) . 
CXVI. Massacre of the Moslems in Acre — may God have 

mercy upon them ! . . . 

CXVI I. The enemy march upon Ascalon, along the shore 

of the Western Sea 
CXVI 1 1. A fight takes place . . . 

CXIX. The enemy sends to communicate with us that 
same day . . ... 

CXX. El-Melek el-'Adel's interview with the King of 

England . . . 

CXX I. The battle of Arsuf, which was a blow to all 
Moslem hearts .... 

CXXII. The Sultan sets out for Ramla 

CXXIII. Arrival of an ambassador from the Marquis 

CXXIV. El-Melek el-'Adel visits Jerusalem . 

CXXV. Intelligence received from the outpost stationed 

before Acre — account of the doings of some 

Arab thieves who used to get into the enemy's 

camp ...... 

CXXVI. El-Melek el-'Adel sends a message to the King of 
England ...... 


245 i 
















CXXV^II. Shirkuh ibn Jiakhel, the Kurd, makes his escape 

from Acre, where he was kept a prisoner . 309 

CXXVIII. El-Melek el-'Adel sends me on a mission to the 

Su'.tan, attended by several Emirs . • 310 

CXXIX. A messenger takes el-'Adel's answer to the King of 

England's proposal . . . .312 

CXXX. The Franks come out from Jaffa . . '313 

CXXXI. Death of el-Melek el-MozafferTaki ed-Din . 314 

CXXXI I. A despatch arrives from Baghdad . . . 315 

CXXXI 1 1. The Lord of Sidon comes on an embassy from 

the Marquis ...... 317 

CXXXIV. Ambush where Aiyaz el-Mehrani testifies (for the 

faith) . . . . . .318 

CXXXV. El-Melek's interview with the King of England . 320 

CXXXVI. The King of England's message to the Sultan . 321 

CXXX VI I. The Lord of Sidon is received by the Sultan . 321 

CXXXVI 1 1. An ambassador arrives from the King of England 322 

CXXX IX. A council is held as to whether it will be better to 

treat with the King of England or the Marquis 323 
CXL, The Sultan encamps on Tell el-Jezer 
CXLI. Departure of el-Melek el-'Adel 
CXLIi; Departure of the Marquis's ambassador . 
CXLI 1 1. Seif ed-Din el-Meshtub recovers his freedom 
CXLIV. Return of the ambassador from (the Lord of) Tyre 
CXLV. Assassination of the Marquis 

CXLVI. Conclusion of the business of el-Melek el-Mansur, 
and what happened to him 
CXLVI I. Arrival of the Greek ambassador 
CXLVI 1 1. El-Melek el-'Adel and the country beyond the 
Euphrates .... 

CXLIX. The Franks seize ed-Ddrun 

CL. The Franks march upon Mejdel Yiba 
CLI. Skirmish in (on the outskirts of) Tyre 
CLII. Arrival of Moslem troops to take part in the Holy 


CLI 1 1. The enemy makes preparations to advance against 

Jerusalem .... 

CLIV. The enemy halts at Beit-Nfiba 
CLV. The caravan from Egypt is captured 
CLVI. Recall of el-Melek el-Afdal 

CLVII. The enemy withdraw into their own territory 
cause of their retreat 
CLVI II. Count Henry sends an ambassador 










CLIX. The Franks send their ambassador once more to 

negotiate a peace .... 
CLX. The Frank ambassador returns for the third time 
CLXI. The ambassador returns 
CLXII. The Sultan's expedition 
CLXI 1 1. Siege of Jaffa 
CLXIV. Capture of Jaffa ; events in that city 

CLXV. How the citadel remained in the enemy's hands 
CLXVI. Fresh negotiations concerning peace 
CLX VI I. (New) forces arrive . 
CLXVIII. Arrival of el-Melek el-Mansur, son of Taki ed-Din 
CLXIX. The Sultan goes to Ramla . 
CLXX. The King agrees to give up Ascalon ^ 
CLXXI. Peace is concluded . 
CLXXII. Demolition of Ascalon 

CLXX 1 1 1. Return of ;the Moslem armies to their homes 
CLXXIV. Arrival of an ambassador from Baghdad . 
CLXXV. El-Melek ez-Zaher sets out on his return to his own 
dominions, but the Sultan is anxious about him 
CLXXVI. The Sultan leaves Jerusalem 
CLXXVII. The Sultan returns to Damascus 
CLXXVI 1 1. Arrival of el-Melek el-'Adel 
CLXXIX. The Sultan goes out to meet the Haj 
CLXXX. The Sultan's illness . 
CLXXXI. El-Afdal receives the oaths of allegiance 
CLXXXII. Death of the Sultan — may God have mercy upon 
him, and sanctify his soul ! . . . 






Western Palestine, 1187, showing the Latin Fiefs End of book 
Battlefield of Hattin ----- page 112 
Syria in the Middle Ages, after Arab Geographers „ 144 
Plan of Acre (a.d. 1291) - - - - , 210 

Plain of Acre and Vicinity - - ,256 


The present volume closes the series of translations issued 
by the Palestine Pilgrims^ Text Society, and I am glad to 
take this opportunity of conveying the thanks of the 
Committee to those gentlemen who have so kindly and 
readily given their assistance in translating, annotating, 
and editing the works. Without the cordial assistance 
of those gentlemen it would not have been possible to 
carry out the original programme of the Society, and place 
within the reach of English readers the more important 
of the records which the early and mediaeval pilgrims have 
left of their pilgrimages to Jerusalem and the Holy Land. 
The Committee and the Society are also deeply indebted 
to the Hon. Secretary and Treasurer, who has done so 
much to further the interests of the work. 

C W. Wilson. 

May, 1897. 


The author of the Life of Salah ed-Din (Saladin), Abu 
el-Mehasan Yusuf ibn-Rafi ibn-Temim el-Asadi, is better 
known by his surname, Beha ed-Din (Bohadin), ' lustre of 
religion.' He was brought up by his maternal uncles, the 
Beni Sheddad, whence he is often called Ibn Sheddad, 
and he became a legist of the Shafite sect, a noted tradi- 
tionist, and the Kadi of Aleppo. He was born on March 5, 
1 145, at Mosul, and there learnt the Kuran under the 
celebrated hdfiz (traditionist) Abu Bekr Yahya Ibn 
S'adun of Cordova. Towards the end of 1170 he went to 
Baghdad and acted as assistant master in the Nizamiya 
College. In 11 74 he returned to Mosul and became pro- 
fessor in the college founded by Kemal ed-Din Abu el-Fadl 

In 1 188 Beha ed-Din made the pilgrimage to Mecca, 
and afterwards that to Jerusalem and Hebron. He then 
went to Damascus, and whilst he was staying there Salah 
ed-Din, who had heard of his arrival, sent for him. He 
visited the Sultan, who was then besieging Kaukab, and 
was offered, but refused, the chief professorship at the 
College of Menazil el-Izz at Old Cairo. Afterwards, when 
the Sultan was encamped on the plain before Hisn el- 
Akrad (Castle of the Kurds), he paid him another visit, 


and on this occasion presented him with a book on the 
merit of waging war against the infidels. Later he entered 
the service of Salah ed-Din, and was appointed Kddz el- 
Askar (Kadi of the Army), and hakim (magistrate with 
full executive power) of Jerusalem. He accompanied 
Salah ed-Din during his later campaigns, and, on the 
Sultan's death, went to Aleppo to establish harmony 
amongst his sons. Ez-Zaher, the Prince of Aleppo, sent 
him to his brother el-Aziz, who ruled at Cairo, and on his 
return made him Kadi of Aleppo. 

Beha ed-Din was also adminstrator of the Wakfs, Vizir, 
and privy counsellor to ez-Zaher. He reorganized the 
colleges at Aleppo, and provided them with good teachers ; 
and, out of the ikta (State revenue) granted to him, he 
founded a college and mosque near the Irak Gate, opposite 
the College of Nur ed-Din. Close to the college he also 
founded a school for teaching the 'Traditions' of the 
Prophet. When ez-Zaher died he was succeeded by his 
son el-Melek el- Aziz Abu el-Muzaffer Muhammad, who, 
being still a child, remained under the care of the eunuch 
Shibab ed-Din Abu Said Toghrul, an Armenian by birth, 
who acted as his atabeg (guardian) and administered the 
Principality under Beha ed-Din. 

The fame of Beha ed-Din attracted many visitors to 
Aleppo, and legists especially were always warmly wel- 
comed. In his old age the learned Kadi taught the 
• Traditions ' in his own house, to which he had added a 
sheltered alcove where he sat winter and summer. After 
the Friday prayers people went to his house to hear him 
repeat the 'Traditions,' and to enjoy his conversation, 
which was agreeable, and chiefly turned on literature. 
Ibn Khallik^n gives a touching picture of his failing 
strength in his later years. As he frequently had a bad 
cough he rarely left his alcove, and in winter he always 


had beside him a large brasier of charcoal. He constantly 
wore a coat lined with furs of Bortas (north of the 
Caspian) and a number of tunics, and sat on a very soft 
cushion placed on a pile of carpets. Old age had made 
him ' as weak as a little bird just hatched,' and his legs 
* had so little flesh on them that they were like thin sticks.' 
It was with the greatest pain and difficulty that he was 
able to move in order to say his prayers. Except in the 
height of summer he never prayed in the mosque, and 
even then, when with extreme difficulty he stood up to 
pray, he was always ready to fall. 

In November, 1231, at the advanced age of eighty-six, 
he was sent to Egypt to bring back the daughter of 
el-Melek el-Kamil, who had been betrothed to el-Aziz. 
He returned in June, 1232, to find that Toghrul had been 
dismissed, and that el-Aziz had taken the management of 
affairs into his own hands. A younger generation had 
grown up, and Beha ed-Din was no longer consulted on 
questions of state. The old Kadi gradually became so 
feeble that he could not recognise his friends, and, on 
November 8, 1234, he died, in his ninetieth year, leaving 
his house as a Khangah (monastery) to the Sufis. 

Salah ed-Din (Saladin) was the son of Ayub, and 
grandson of Shadi, a Rawadiya Kurd of the great Hadaniya 
tribe. He was thus of Kurd descent. Several of his 
bravest warriors and most trusted counsellors were Kurds, 
and during his reign, and that of his brother el-'Adel, 
Kurds ruled in Armenia, Mesopotamia, Syria, Palestine, 
Egypt, and Arabia. 

Shadi lived near Tovin, apparently at the village of 
Ajdanakan, where Ayub is said to have been born. After 
the birth of his two sons, Ayub and Shirkuh, he left the 
Armenian plateau, and proceeded first to Baghdad and 
then to Tekrit, where he settled, and afterwards died. 


His sons entered the service of Mujahid ed-Din Bihruz, a 
Greek slave, who governed the province of Irak for the 
Seljuk Sultan MasCid, and had been granted Tekrit as an 
appanage. Bihriiz appointed Ayub Governor of Tekrit, 
and here Salah ed-Din was born. The action of Ayub 
in assisting Zenghi to cross the Tigris, when he was 
marching on Baghdad, greatly displeased Bihruz, and 
some time afterwards the two brothers were expelled from 
the city. They at once entered the service of Zenghi, 
then Lord of Mosul, and, on the capture of Ba'albek^ 
Ayub was appointed Governor of that place. 

After the murder of Zenghi, Ayub was attacked by the 
Seljuk, Mujir ed-Din Abek, who then ruled at Damascus, 
and not receiving any support from Mosul, surrendered, 
and became one of the chief Emirs of Damascus. On 
Zenghi's death Shirkuh entered the service of his son, 
Nur ed-Din, then Lord of Aleppo, who made him com- 
mander of the army, and gave him Emessa and other cities 
as an appanage. When Nur ed-Din took Damascus he 
attached Ayub and Salah ed-Din to his person, and the 
latter remained in attendance, learning much from his 
over-lord, until he accompanied his uncle, Shirkuh, on his 
first expedition to Egypt. The further history of Salah 
ed-Din is fully related by his biographer, and the accom- 
panying genealogical tables will explain the relationship 
of the most important personages mentioned in the 

The translation, originally made from the French edition 
published in the * Recueil des histor. d. Croisades, auteurs 
Arabes, iii., 1-393,' has been carefully revised and compared 
with the edition of Schultens by Lieut.-Colonel Conder, 
R.E., and in several passages, especially those relating to 
the death of Sal^h ed-Din, the rendering has been very 
materially altered. The notes with the initial W are by 


the Editor ; all other notes are by Lieut. -Colonel Conder, 
R.E., who has very kindly revised all the proofs, and thrown 
light on many doubtful points. 

The biographical notices in the notes are principally 
from Ibn Khallikan's Biographical Dictionary, translated 
by Baron MacGuckin de Slane for the Oriental Transla- 
tion Fund. 

C. W. W. 




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In the name of God, the merciful, the compassionate ! 

Praise be to God, who has given us Islam, who has led us 
to a faith so exalted, and who, in His mercy, has granted 
us our Prophet (Muhammad) to intercede for us. Praise 
be to Him, who has ordered the lives of past generations 
for the instruction of thinking men. and has allowed the 
vicissitudes of this life to be a sure proof of the instability 
of all created things. By this means He desires to prevent 
the favourite of fortune from suffering himself to be led 
astray by prosperity, and to preserve from despair the man 
who has become a plaything in the hands of adversity. 

I bear witness that there is but one God, and there is 
none like Him. This is a faith which heals souls perishing 
with thirst (for the truth). I also testify that Muhammad 
is His servant and messenger, he who has opened the 
doors of right living to those who use the keys of submis- 
sion and resignation. May God shed blessings unending 
upon him and his family, as long as this world endures. 

Let us pass to our subject, and write of that Prince strong 
to aid {el-Melek en-Ndsr), who re-established the doctrine of 
the true faith, struck to earth the worshippers of the Cross, 



and raised the standard of justice and benevolence ; he 
who was the prosperity (Sa/d/i) of the world and of the 
faith {ed-Dtn)j the Sultan of Islam and of the Moslems, the 
warrior who delivered the Holy City from the hands of the 
polytheists, the servant {Khadim) of the two Sanctuaries 
(Mecca and Jerusalem), Abu el-Mozafifer Yusuf, son of 
Ayub, and grandson of Shadhi. May God shed on his tomb 
the dew of His approval, and allow him to taste, in the 
abode of mercy, all the sweetness of the faith. Having 
seen the goodly days of the reign of our Lord the Sultan, 
it was possible for me to believe certain traditions of the 
men of olden time that are commonly considered im- 
probable and fictitious, and to accept as true, anecdotes 
of noble and benevolent men. I was able to credit what 
is told us of the lives of brave warriors, because I had 
witnessed the noble deeds of certain Memluks, deeds of 
which the truth has been called in question. With my 
own eyes I had seen men who fought in God's cause dis- 
play a hardihood in the midst of danger which would 
surpass belief. I myself had seen wonderful deeds which 
heart and brain could hardly conceive ; actions so mar- 
vellous that the tongue would be powerless to picture them, 
and the hand to describe them on paper. Nevertheless, 
these deeds are of such a nature that he who knows them 
cannot keep them concealed, and he who has witnessed 
them feels compelled to pass on to others a narrative of the 
wonders he has seen. 

Overwhelmed by the favours of Salah ed-Din, honoured 
by his friendship and attached to his service, I felt obliged, 
both by gratitude and duty, to relate to the world all that 
I knew and all that I had learnt of his noble character and 
his heroic actions. But I have thought it right to confine 
myself to those things which I have seen with my own 
eyes, and to such information from others as appeared to 


be of indisputable authority. Although this be but a part 
of the whole, a little gathered from much, this part will be 
sufficient to enable all to judge of the rest, just as after the 
appearance of dawn the rays of light announce the ap- 
proach of the sun. 

I have called this work ' What befell Sultan Yusuf,' and 
have divided it into two parts. The first deals with his birth 
and youth, his noble character, his sweet disposition, and 
those natural qualities which so distinguished him, and 
which are so acceptable in the sight of God's law. In the 
second part I shall describe, in chronological order, the 
vicissitudes of his life, his wars, and his conquests, to the 
hour of his death. May God have mercy on him ! 

I pray that God may preserve me from the errors to 
which tongue and pen are liable, and hinder my spirit from 
taking a path wherein my foot must stumble. God will 
suffice me : He is the best of all guardians. 


Birth of Salah ed-Din, his Good Qualities, his 
Character, and Natural Disposition. 

I learn from the lips of certain persons worthy of cre- 
dence, who had made inquiries concerning the date of the 
birth of Salah ed-Din, in order to construct the horoscope 
of this prince according to the rules of astrology, that he 
was born in the course of the year 532 (a.d. ii 37-11 38), in 
the citadel of Tekrit, where his father, Ayub, son of 
Shadhi, discharged his duties as Governor. Ayub was an 
honourable, generous, and good man. He was born at 
Dovin.^ Circumstances afterwards obliged him to leave 
Tekrit,- and he betook himself to Mosul, taking his son 
with him. Here he remained until his son had grown 
up. Ayub and his brother, Asad ed-Din Shirkuh, w«re 
held in high esteem by the Atabeg Zenghi (Prince of 
Mosul). Proceeding afterwards into Syria, Ayub obtained 
the government of B'albek, and dwelt for some time in that 
place. His son, who had accompanied him, entered upon 
his first service under his direction. Brought up in his 

* Dovin {Tovifty Armenian Devin) near Erivan in Trans-Caucasia. 

2 Tekrit^ the ancient Biriha^ is situated on the right bank of 
the Tigris, between Mosul and Baghdad. The events to which our 
author here alludes are related by Ibn el-Athir in his ' History of^the 
Atabegs of Mosul.' 


father's bosom, and nourished on the lofty principles which 
his father set before him, he soon showed signs of the good 
fortune which was always to accompany him, and gave 
evidence of a spirit born to command. El-Melek el-'Adel 
Nur ed-Din Mahmud, son of Zenghi, bestowed upon him 
advancement, and, as a mark of his confidence and high 
esteem, attached him to his service, and admitted him to the 
number of his friends. The higher Salah ed-Din rose in 
degree, the more apparent became qualities which entitled 
him to a still more exalted rank. This state of things 
continued until his uncle, Asad ed-Din Shirkuh, started 
upon the Egyptian expedition. Later, in a more suitable 
place, we will give a detailed account of this expedition, 
with all particulars. 



In our collection of authentic traditions stands the follow- 
ing saying of the Holy Prophet : ' Islam is built upon five 
columns : confession of the unity of God, the regular per- 
formance of prayer, payment of the tenth (tithe) in charity, 
the fast of the month Ramadan, and pilgrimage to the 
Holy House of God (Mecca).' 

Salah ed-Din — may God be merciful to him ! — truly 
believed in the doctrines of the faith, and often recited 
prayers in praise of God. He had accepted the dogmas 
of religion upon demonstrable proofs, the result of his 
conversations with the most learned doctors and the most 
eminent jurisconsults. In these arguments he acquired 


knowledge that enabled him to speak to the purpose when 
a discussion took place in his presence, although he did 
not employ the technical language of the lawyers. These 
conversations confirmed him in a true faith, which remained 
undisturbed by any doubt, and, in his case, prevented the 
arrow of speculation from overshooting the mark, and 
striking at last on doubt and infidelity. 

The learned doctor Kotb ed-Din^ en-Nisaburi- had com- 
posed an exposition of Isl^m {akidd) for the benefit of this 
prince, containing all that was necessary for him to know. 
As he was much pleased with this treatise, he made his 
younger sons learn it by heart, so that good doctrine 
might be established in their souls from their tenderest 
years. I have myself seen him take this book and read 
it aloud to his children, after they had committed its 
contents to memory. 

As to prayer, he was always regular in his attendance at 
the public service (on Fridays), and he said one day that 
for several years he had never failed in this duty. When 
he was ill, he used to send for the Imam alone, and forcing 
himself to keep on his feet, would recite the Friday 

^ Abu el Ma'ali Mas'ud Ibn Muhammad, sumamed Kotb ed-Din, 
* pivot of the faith,' was born in the district of Nishapih: He studied 
law at Nishapurand Merv, and was a professor in the college founded 
by Nur ed-Din at Aleppo. He prepared for Salah ed-Din an akida^ 
or exposition of Islam, which contained all necessary information on 
religious matters. He died at Damascus in a.d. 1183 (Ibn Khallikan, 
III. 35i).-W. 

* NisabUr {Nishapilr) was, according to tradition, founded by 
Shahpur (Sapor) ; and, under the Sassanians, one of the three holiest 
fire-temples stood near it. Under the Moslems it contained a large 
Arab element, and became the capital and most important town of 
Khorasan. Its gardens and fruits were famous, and it was called 
the ' Little Damascus.' Many students were attracted by its col- 
leges, which had a high reputation. It was the birthplace of Omar 
Khayy&m, the celebrated astronomer-poet of Persia, who died in 
A.D. 1123.— W. 


prayers.^ He recited the usual prayers regularly, and, if 
he woke during the night, said a prayer. If he did not 
wake, he used to pray before the morning prayer. As 
long as consciousness lasted, he never failed to say his 
prayers. I saw him perform this duty regularly during 
his last illness, and he discontinued it only during the 
three days in which his mind was wandering. When he 
was travelling, he used to get down from his horse at the 
appointed hours- to pray. 

Let us speak of his tenth in charity. The sum of money 
he left at his death was not large enough to be submitted 
to this tax ; his private charities had absorbed everything. 
He who had possessed such abundant wealth left in his 
treasury, when he died, but seven-and-forty Nasri dirhems, 
and a single Tyrian gold piece.^ He left neither goods, 
nor house, nor real estate, neither garden, nor village, nor 
cultivated land, nor any other species of property. 

Let us pass to the fast of the month Ramadan. Several 

^ Attendance at the Friday prayers {Saldt el-Jum^a) is regarded by 
Moslems as a farz duty, that is, as one commanded from God in the 
Kuran. The prayers take the place of the ordinary mid-day service, 
and differ from it only in the omission of four rak'as^ and the 
addition of a Khutba^ or sermon, preached by the Khdtib, who is 
generally the Imam. The usual prayers, recited by Salah ed-Din, 
were the five daily services, and perhaps also the three voluntary 
services. The prayer during the night was probably a service of two 
rak'as. Each service consists of a certain number of obligatory and 
voluntary rak'as; it may be said in public or in private, but when said 
in a mosque it must be preceded by the azdn, or call to prayers, and 
the ikdtna, a repetition of the azan, concluding with the words ' Prayer 
has commenced.' The rakhi is an act of worship, consisting of the 
recitation of verses from the Kuran, sentences of praise offered to 
God, and acts of ritual, including the prostrations. — W. 

2 The appointed hours are (i) from dawn to sunrise ; (2) when the 
sun has begun to decline ; (3) midway between 2 and 4 ; (4) a few 
minutes after sunset ; and (5) when the night has closed in. — W. 

•^ The Tyrian diiiaj'- (Greek de7iarion) was so called because it was 
struck at Tyre. The Nasri dirhem (Greek drachme) was a silver coin, 
probably inscribed with the name of el-Melek en-Nasr Salah ed-Din. 


of these fasts remained to be fulfilled, as he had not 
observed them in consequence of his frequent illnesses. 
It was the duty of el-Kadi el-Fadel^ to keep an account of 
the number of these days. The prince — may God have 
mercy on him ! — was in the last year of his life, and was 
dwelling at Jerusalem, when he began to make reparation 
for the fasts he had omitted. He then fasted for a period 
exceeding the ordinary month, for he had still a fast of 
two Ramadans to keep, which he had been prevented from 
observing by constant disorders of the body, and the con- 
tinual cares of the Holy War. Fasting did not suit his 
health ; but thus, by the inspiration of God, he undertook 
to repair his omissions during that year. It fell to me to 
keep account of the days, for the Kadi was absent. It 
was useless for his physician to disapprove of what he was 
doing. The prince would not listen to him, and said, * I 
do not know what may happen.' It seems as though God 
had inspired Salah ed-Din to save his responsibility by 
paying his debt, and so he continued to fast until the days 
were wholly accomplished. 

Let us now speak of the pilgrimage. He always in- 
tended to perform it, and, above all, in the last year of 
his life. He had made up his mind, and given orders 
for the necessary preparations to be made. We had 
collected provisions for the journey, and all was ready 
for the start, when he decided to postpone the pilgrimage 
till the following year on account of want of time and 

' Abu 'All Abd er-Rahim el-Lakhmi el-'Askalani, generally known 
as el-Kidi el-Fidel, ' the talented Kadi,' was vizir of Salah ed-Din, by 
whom he was treated with the highest favour. He was surnamed 
el-Misri, because he lived in Egypt, and el-Beisani because his father 
was Kadi of Beisdn. He was famous as a letter- writer, and was also 
a poet. Born at Ascalon (a.d. 1135), he died in Egypt (a.d. 1200), 
after having been vizir to SalAh ed-Din, el-Melek el-' Aziz, and el-Melek 
el-Mansur (Ibn Khallikan, ii. iii). — W. 


lack of money sufficient for one of his high rank. But 
God decreed as He did decree. What I have related on 
that subject is a thing known to all the world. 

Salah ed-Din was very fond of hearing the Kuran read, 
and he used to argue with the Imam. This man had 
to be master of all knowledge connected with the text 
of the Kuran, and to know the book by heart. When 
the prince passed the night in the alcove^ (of his tent), 
he used to charge the man on guard to read him two, 
three, or four sections.- When he gave public audiences, 
he would have from one to twenty verses, and sometimes 
more, read by men accustomed to do so. One day he 
passed a little boy who was reading the Kuran very well 
at his father's side, and was so pleased that he had the 
boy called, and gave him some of the food set aside for 
his own special use. Also he granted to him and his 
father part of the produce of a certain field. His heart 
was humble, and full of compassion ; tears came readily 
into his eyes. When he was listening to the reading 
of the Kuran, his heart melted, and tears generally 
flowed down his cheeks. He was very fond of listening 
to the recital of traditions^ when the narrator could trace 
each tradition that he related to its source, and when he 
was learned in such lore. If one of the doctors visited 
the court, he received him personally, and made those 
of his sons who happened to be present as well as the 

^ The word di^rj] rendered ' alcove,' usually signifies ' a tower.' Here 
it appears to mean a small room, built of wood, which contained a 
bed, and opened into the tent. 

2 The text of the Kuran is divided into thirty sections {Jus, or 
st/dra), so that a pious man, taking one section a day, can recite the 
whole Kuran in the month of Ramadan. 

3 The Traditions {HaditK) contain the record of all that Muhammad 
did and said. They form an important part of Moslem theology, and 
occupy a place second only to the Kuran. — W. 


memluks on duty, listen to the traditions recited. He 
would order all those who were present to be seated 
during the narration, as a sign of respect. If any of the 
doctors of traditionary lore were such characters as do 
not frequent the gates of Sultans, and are unwilling to 
present themselves in such places, Salah ed-Din would go 
himself to seek them out and listen to them. When he 
was at Alexandria, he often visited Hafiz el-Isfahani,^ and 
learnt from him a great number of traditions. He himself 
was fond of reading traditions, so he used to make me 
come into his private chamber, and there, surrounded by 
books of traditions which he had had collected, he would 
begin to read ; and whenever he came to a tradition 
containing an instructive passage, he was so touched that 
the tears came into his eyes. 

He showed the greatest zeal in his observance of the 
precepts of religion, openly maintaining his belief in the 
resurrection of the bodies of the just in Paradise, and of 
the wicked in Hell. He believed steadfastly in all the 
teaching of the Divine Law, accepting its doctrines with 
an open heart. He detested philosophers, heretics,^ 
materialists, and all adversaries of orthodox religion. He 
even ordered his son el-Melek ez-Zaher, Prince of Aleppo — 
may God exalt his supporters ! — to put to death a young 
man named Suhraverdi.^ He had been accused of not 

^ This Hafiz el-Isfahani does not appear to be otherwise known.— W. 

2 The Arabic text has el-Muattila {Mii'tazila, 'the Separatists'). 
This word, in scholastic theology, is applied to a sect who rejected 
the idea of eternal attributes, saying that eternity was the formal 
attribute of the essence of God. The Mu'attilites were the free- 
thinkers of Islam, and were regarded by the orthodox as heretics, 
and tainted with atheism. 

3 Abu el-Futuh Yahya Ibn Habash es-Suhraverdi was born at 
Suhraverdi, a village in Persian Irak, and was one of the most 
learned men of his age. He had studied at Maragha in Azerbijan, 
and was said by some to be a fire-worshipper {zcndik\ and by others 


recognising the ordinances of the law, and of paying no 
regard to the doctrines of the faith. Ez-Zaher,^ having 
sent this man to prison, reported what had passed to his 
father, and at Salah ed-Din's command had him executed, 
and his body hung upon a cross for several days. 

Having perfect trust in God, he looked upon Him as 
his great support, and turned ever to Him. I will give 
an instance of this which I myself witnessed. The 
Franks — may God confound them! — had pitched their 
camp at Beit-Nuba,- a place situated about a day's journey 
from Jerusalem. The Sultan occupied this city, after 
having surrounded the enemy with out-posts, and sent out 
men to spy and watch all their movements. He received 
constant news of the Franks, and of their fixed determina- 
tion to come up to the Holy City and lay siege to it. As 
this struck great terror among the Moslems, he called his 
emirs together, informed .them of the calamity which 
threatened the faithful, and submitted to them whether it 
was right to remain in the city. They appeared, one and 
all, of good courage, but their real sentiments were very 
different from those which they expressed. They declared 
unanimously that the Sultan's presence in Jerusalem would 
be of no advantage, and might, indeed, endanger Islam ; 
that they themselves would remain there, while he went 
out with a body of men to surround the Franks, as had 

to be an infidel and acquainted with magic. He was really a very 
advanced Sufi, and so an abomination to Salah ed-Din. He was 
strangled in the castle at Aleppo, in a.d. 1191, at the early age of 
thirty-eight (Ibn Khallikdn, iv. 153).— W. 

^ Abu el-Fath Ghazi Abu Mansur el-Melek ez-Zaher Ghiath ed-Din 
was fond of learning and generous to poets. He was resolute, animated 
by a lofty spirit, skilled in the administration of affairs, and intent on 
the diffusion of justice. He was born in 11 73, made Governor of 
Aleppo in 1187, and died in 1216 (Ibn Khallikan, ii. 443).— W. 

2 £ei^ Ntiba, called bv the Franks Betenoble, 12 miles N.W. of 
Jerusalem, immediately N. of Ajalon, at the foot of the mountains. 


been done at Acre. At the head of this army, he was to 
keep the enemy narrowly hemmed in, and cut off their 
supplies of provisions ; meanwhile, they would hold the 
city and repel attacks. The council having broken up, 
the Sultan forthwith determined to hold the city, know- 
ing full well that otherwise no one would remain there. 
After the emirs had left to return to their houses, a 
messenger came from them to the Sultan to inform him 
that they would not remain in Jerusalem, unless he left 
at their head either his brother el-Melek el-'Adel, or one 
of his own sons. He felt that this communication meant 
that they did not intend to remain in the city, and 
his heart was sorely oppressed, and he knew not what to 
decide. On this same night, which was the eve of Friday, 
I was on duty in his chamber, having to stay there from 
evening until dawn. It was in the rainy season, and with 
us two there was no third but God. We made plans, and 
discussed the consequences of each plan ; but at last I grew 
concerned for him, seeing him so overwhelmed with despair, 
and I began to fear for his health. So I begged him to lie 
down on his bed, and sleep a little if possible. He replied : 
' You must be sleepy, too,' then he rose (to withdraw). 
Passing into my house, I busied myself with some private 
affairs until dawn, when the summons to prayer sounded. 
As I usually said the morning-prayer with him, I went into 
his chamber, where I found him washing. ' I have not 
slept a single moment,' he said. I replied that I knew it. 
' How ?' he asked. I answered, * Because I have not slept 
myself, not having had the time.' We then said our 
prayers, after which we sat down to what we had to do. 
At last I said : * I have an idea that, I believe, is a good 
one, please God !' * What is it ?' he asked. I replied : 
* Support is from God, turn to Him and trust in His good- 
ness, and you will be delivered out of this affliction.' 


'And what shall we do?' he inquired. I answered: 
* To-day is Friday ; your Highness will perform a cere- 
monial ablution before going this afternoon to the Aksa ; 
you will say your prayer as usual in the holy place^ of the 
Prophet's night journey. You will charge a confidential 
servant to give alms in secret ; then you will say a prayer 
of two rak'a after the azan and before the ikama,^ and 
whilst you remain prostrate, you will call upon God for 
help. We have a credible tradition on this subject. Your 
Highness will say within yourself: O/i God I all earthly 
means that I have employed, for the defence of religion, now 
fail me. There remains for me no resource but to seek 
support in Thee, to put myself in Thy hand, and to trust 
myself to Thy goodness. Upon Thee alone do I count, Thou 
art the best of guardians. Rest assured that God is too 
generous to reject your appeal.' He did exactly as I had 
advised, and I prayed by his side as usual. Whilst he said 
the two rak'a between the azan and the ikama, his body 
prostrate, I saw the tears fall on to his grizzling beard, and 
then on to the prayer-carpet ; but I did not hear what 
he had said. Before we had reached the end of the day a 
dispatch arrived in which 'Izz ed-Din Jurdik,^ who was 
then in command of the advanced guard, informed us that 
a great disturbance reigned amongst the Franks ; that 
their men had this day mounted their horses and be- 

^ The Prophet is traditionally supposed to have ascended from the 
Cave in the Sakhrah, or holy ' rock ' in the Kubbet es-Sakhrah. The 
word Aksa stands for the whole enclosure of the Haram esh-Sherif. 

2 The azd?i, or ' call to prayer,' is given by the Mu'ezzin at the time of 
public prayer. When the prayers are said in a mosque they commence 
with the ikdma, a repetition of the azan, with the addition of the words, 
' Prayer has commenced.' For rak'a, see p. 7. — W. 

3 'Izz ed-Din Jurdik was a freedman of Nur ed-Din, who accom- 
panied Shirkuh to Egypt. He and Salah ed-Din killed Shawar, the 
vizir of the Fatimite Khalif of Egypt ; and he was afterwards one of 
Salah-ed-Din's emirs. — W. 


taken themselves to the plain ;^ that they had halted 
there until noon, and then all at once returned to their 
camp. Early on Saturday a second dispatch arrived with 
the same news. During the day a spy came in and reported 
that discord was rampant amongst the Franks, the king 
of France having declared that they must absolutely lay 
siege to Jerusalem, whilst the king of England and his 
supporters were unwilling to risk the Christian cause by 
throwing their troops into a mountainous country, where 
their water-supply would be entirely cut off, for the Sultan 
had destroyed all the wells round the city. Also that their 
chiefs had gone out (from the camp) to hold a council in 
their usual manner, for it is their custom, when it is a 
question of war, to take counsel together on horseback. 
Also that they had agreed to refer the point to the con- 
sideration of ten persons whom they had chosen from 
amongst themselves, and to abide by their decision. On 
Monday morning a messenger came to announce that the 
enemy had struck their camp, and were marching towards 
Ramla.2 This was an instance of the Sultan's great trust 
in God. I myself was a witness of it. 



Abu Bekr^ — God be gracious to him ! — records that the 
Holy Prophet said : ' A just governor is the shadow of God 
upon earth. He who serves God faithfully himself and for 
others, God will place under the shadow of His throne on 

^ The plain of Ajalon. 

3 See p. 295. 

3 The first Khalifa, or successor of Muhammad. 


that day when no other will remain except that shadow ; 
but he who seeks to deceive God in matters which concern 
himself or other men, God will deprive of all hope on the 
day of resurrection. To the just governor, for the good 
work he has done day by day, He will assign a reward 
equal to that of sixty true-hearted men who each have 
worked for their own salvation.' Our Sultan — may the 
mercy of God rest upon him ! — was just, merciful, com- 
passionate, and ready to aid the weak against the strong. 
Every Monday and Thursday he sat in public to ad- 
minister justice, and on these occasions jurisconsults, 
kadis, and men learned in the law were present. Every 
one who had a grievance was admitted — great and small, 
aged women and feeble men. He sat thus, not only when 
he was in the city, but even when he was travelling ; and 
he always received with his own hand the petitions that 
were presented to him, and did his utmost to put an end 
to every form of oppression that was reported. Everyday 
he made a packet of these documents, and opened the 
doors of justice (to the complainants) ; he never sent away 
those who came to complain of their wrongs or to demand 
redress. Every day, either during the daytime or in the 
nii^ht. he spent an hour with his secretary, and wrote on 
each petition, in the terms which God suggested to him, an 
answer to its prayer. 

Whenever a petitioner applied to him, he would stop to 
listen, to receive his complaint, and to inquire into the 
rights of the matter. I myself saw a man of Damascus, 
named Ibn-Zoheir, deliver a complaint against Taki 
ed-Din, the Sultan's nephew, demanding justice. Although 
Taki ed-Din was high in the affection and esteem of his 
uncle, the Sultan would not spare him in a matter where 
justice was at stake, and caused him to appear before the 


Here is an anecdote still more remarkable than the fore- 
going, which likewise shows his great sense of justice. I 
was one day presiding in the tribunal in the Holy City of 
Jerusalem, when I saw a fine old man enter who usually 
went by the name of 'Omar el-Khelati. He was a merchant 
and native of Khelat.^ This man placed in my hands a 
certified memorandum, and begged me to read its contents. 
I asked him who was his adversary, and he replied : * My 
affair is with the Sultan ; this is the seat of justice, and I 
have heard that here you make no distinction of persons.' 
* Why,' I said, * do you bring a suit against him ?' He 
replied : ' I had a memluk named Sonkor el-Khelati, who 
remained in my possession until his death. At that time 
he had several large sums of money in hand, all of which 
belonged to me. He died, leaving these sums : the Sultan 
took possession of them, and I lay claim to them as my 
property.' I then asked him why he had delayed so long 
before making his claim, and he replied : * One does not 
forfeit one's rights by delaying to claim them, and here I 
have a certified document proving that the slave remained 
in my possession until his death.' I took the paper, and 
having read it through, saw it contained a description of 
Sonkor el-Khelati, with a note that his master had bought 
him of such an one, a merchant of Arjish- (in Armenia), on 
a certain day of a certain month in a certain year ; I found 
also that the memluk had remained in his master's 
possession until a certain year, when he had escaped by 
flight, and that the witnesses named in the document had 
never understood that the man had ceased to be the 

» Akhlat^ on the shore of Lake Van. See p. 84. 

2 Arjish, the Byzantine Arses^ was taken by the Seljuks in 107 1, 
and by a prince of the house of Salah ed-Din in 1207. It was on the 
north shore of Lake Van, and was submerged by a sudden rise of the 
waters of the lake about fifty years ago.— W. 


property of his master in any manner whatever. The 
instrument was in legal form — nothing was wanting. 
Wondering very much at this affair, I said to the man : ' It 
is not meet to adjudge a claim in the absence of the party 
sued ; I will inform the Sultan, and will let you know what 
he says in this matter.' The man appreciated my remark, 
and withdrew. On the same day, having occasion to pre- 
sent myself before the Sultan, I acquainted him with the 
business. He thought the claim utterly absurd, and asked 
if I had examined the written document. I replied that it 
had been taken to Damascus, and laid before the kadi 
there, who had examined it officially, and appended a 
certificate to that effect, which was witnessed by the signa- 
tures of various well-known persons. 'Very well,' he 
cried, ' we will let the man appear, and I will defend myself 
against him, and conform to all the regulations prescribed 
by law.' Some time afterwards, sitting with him in private, 
I told him that this man came constantly to speak to me, 
and that it was absolutely necessary to give him a hearing. 
He replied : ' Appoint an attorney to act in my name, and 
then receive the depositions of witnesses ; do not open the 
document until the man appears here.' I did according to 
his command, then, when the plaintiff appeared, the Sultan 
ordered him to draw near and to be seated in front of him. 
I was by the side of the prince. He then left the couch on 
which he was sitting, and placing himself by the side of 
the man, called upon him to state his case. He accord- 
ingly set forth his claim in the manner related above, and 
the Sultan replied in these words : ' This Sonkor was a 
meniluk of mine ; he never ceased to be my property till 
the time when I gave him his freedom ; he is dead, and his 
heirs have entered upon the inheritance he left.' Then the 
man answered and said : ' I hold in my hand an instru- 
ment that will prove the truth of what I state. Please to 



open it, that its contents may be known.' I opened the 
document, and found that it bore out the statements of the 
complainant. The Sultan, having informed himself of the 
date of the paper, replied : ' I have witnesses to prove that 
at the said date Sonkor was in my possession and at 
Cairo; the year previous I had bought him with eight 
others, and he remained in my possession till he received 
his freedom.' He then summoned several of his chief 
military officers, who bore witness that the facts were in 
accordance with the statements of the Sultan, and declared 
that the date he had given was exact. The plaintiff was 
confounded, and I said to the Sultan : ' My lord ! the man 
has done this only that he may obtain mercy at my lord's 
hands, being in your presence ; and it will not be meet to 
let him depart disappointed.' ^ Ah !' said the Sultan, 
* that is quite another matter.' He then ordered a robe of 
honour to be given to the man, and a sum of money, of 
which I have forgotten the amount, but which was ample 
to cover his expenses. Observe the rare and admirable 
qualities shown by the Sultan in this matter, his conde- 
scension, his submission to the regulations prescribed by 
law, the putting aside of his pride, and the generosity he 
displayed at a time when he might justly have inflicted a 



Our Holy Prophet says : * When the generous man 
stumbles, God takes him by the hand.' Among our 
traditions (Hadith) are several which relate to generosity. 
This quality of the Sultan's character — may God hallow 
his soul! — is too well known to need setting forth in 


writing, and too patent to require notice. Nevertheless, I 
will just allude to it, and mention that he who had pos- 
sessed such abundance of riches, left in his treasury, at his 
death, but forty-seven Nasri dirhems, and one Tyrian gold 
piece, the weight of which I do not know. Yet he had 
given away whole provinces. When he took the city of 
Amid/ he bestowed it upon the son of Kara Arslan,^ who 
had asked him for it. I was present on one occasion at 
Jerusalem, when he received a great number of deputa- 
tions, just as he was departing for Damascus, and had 
not sufficient money in the treasury to make presents to 
the delegates. I continually reminded him of this, until 
at last he sold one of his farms to the public treasury (dez't 
el-mat), in order that he might distribute the price of it 
among them. This was done with our help, and in the 
end there remained not a single dirhem. He gave just as 
liberally when he was in straits as when he was in the 
enjoyment of plenty. His treasurers were always careful 
to conceal from him certain sums of money, as a provision 
for unforeseen contingencies ; for they knew that if he saw 
them he would spend them at once. I once heard him 
say, in the course of conversation about one of the tradi- 
tions : ' It may be that there is someone in the world who 
esteems money of as little value as the dust of the earth.' 
He was apparently alluding to himself. He always gave 
more than they expected to those who asked. I never 
heard him say : * We have already given to him.' He 
made numerous presents ; to those who had already re- 
ceived gifts he gave again, and with as much pleasure as 
though he had not given them anything before. He 

^ Diarbekr. See p. 85. 

2 This was Nur ed-Din Mahmud Jebu, the Ortokid prince of Hisn 
Keifa (i 167-1 185). He was the son of Fakhr ed-Din Kara Arslan, and 
great-grandson of Sokman, son of Ortok. — W. 

2 — 2 


always acted with great generosity, giving more on a 
second occasion than the recipient had obtained before. 
This was so well known that people were always trying to 
make opportunities for getting money from him. I never 
once heard him say : * I have already given to you several 
times; how often shall I have to give to you again?' Most 
of the replies to these requests were written at my dicta- 
tion, and sometimes with my own hand. I was often 
ashamed at the greed shown by those who asked ; but I 
never hesitated to approach the Sultan in their behalf, 
knowing how generous and kind-hearted he was. No one 
ever entered his service without receiving from him such gifts 
as rendered it unnecessary for him ever to court another's 
generosity. To enumerate his gifts, and to describe their 
varied forms, would be a task impossible to fulfil in any 
satisfactory way. In a conversation on this subject, I 
once heard the chief of the Divan declare : ' We kept an 
account of the number of horses he gave away in the 
plain of Acre alone, and it mounted up to ten thousand.^^ 
Those who have witnessed the multitude of his gifts will 
think but little of this. Great God, Thou it was who didst 
inspire his generosity, Thou, the most generous among 
the generous ! Shower upon him Thy mercy and Thy 
favour, oh. Thou most merciful of those who show 
mercy ! 



HIS soul! 

The Holy Prophet is reported to have said : * God loves 
bravery, even (if displayed) only in killing a serpent.' The 

* He gave horses to the horsemen of his army who had lost their 


Sultan was bravest among the brave ; he was distinguished 
by his energy of soul, his vigour of character, and his 
intrepidity. I have seen him take up his position im- 
mediately in front of a large body of Franks, who were 
every moment being increased and relieved, and the sight 
(of this danger) only strengthened his courage and nerve. 
One evening there came up more than seventy of the 
enemy^s ships ; it took me the whole of the time between 
the 'Asr prayer^ and the prayer at sunset to count them ; 
but their appearance only served to inspirit him anew. 
On another occasion, at the commencement of the rainy 
season, he gave leave to his troops, and remained himself? 
attended by very few men, in the face of a strong force of 
the enemy. On the day when peace was concluded, 
Balian, son of Barizan,^ one of the chief princes of the 
coast, was seated before the Sultan, and I inquired of him 
what was the number of their troops. I received this 
answer through the interpreter : * When the Lord of 
Sidon ' (another of their chiefs, and one of the most in- 
telligent among them) ' and I left Tyre to join our army 
(at the siege of Acre), and when we sighted them from 
the top of the hill, we tried to guess as nearly as we 
could the number of those engaged. The Lord of Sidon 
said there were five hundred thousand ; I said six hundred 
thousand.' I then asked him how many they had lost, 
and he replied : ' Nearly a hundred thousand on the field 
of battle ; but God alone knows the number of those who 
have died from sickness, or who have been drowned.' And 
of all this multitude but a very small number ever 
returned to their native land. 

^ According to tradition, the 'Asr prayers can be said from the time 
when the shadow of a person is the length of his own stature, till the 
sun assumes a yellow appearance. The Maghrib prayers commence 
a few moments after sunset. 

~ Balian I. of Ibelin ( Yebnah\ on the coast. 


When we were close upon the enemy, the Sultan insisted 
on making a reconnaissance round their army once or 
twice every day. In the height of the fighting he used 
to pass between the two lines of battle, accompanied by a 
young page, who led his horse. He would make his way 
in front of his own troops from the right wing to the left, 
intent on the marshalling of his battalions, calling them 
up to the front, and stationing them in positions which 
he deemed advantageous to command the enemy or to 
approach them. On one occasion, whilst standing between 
the two armies, he ordered that some traditions should 
be read to him. It is a fact. I told him that traditions 
could be read in all important places, but that there was 
no instance of its having been done between two armies. 
I added that if his Highness would like such a thing 
told of him, it would be fine. He listened to this. A 
volume was brought, and someone who was present, and 
had studied the book, read to him from it. Meanwhile, we 
remained on horseback, sometimes walking up and down, 
sometimes standing still, but all the while on the ground 
between the two armies. 

I never heard him express any anxiety as to the numbers 
or force of the enemy. Whilst occupied with his own 
thoughts and with the affairs of government, he would 
listen to all sorts of plans, and discuss their (probable) 
results without any excitement, and without losing his 
composure. When the Moslem army was routed in the 
great battle in the plain of Acre, and even the troops in 
the centre had taken to flight after throwing away their 
drums and standards, he maintained the position he had 
taken up, having only a handful of men to support him. 
At last he managed to reach some rising ground, and there 
rallied his men. His reproaches made them so deeply 
ashamed that they returned with him to the fight. The 


victory eventually lay with the Moslems, and the enemy 
had more than seven thousand men killed, both horse 
and foot. The Sultan continued to fight, but at last, seeing- 
the strength of the enemy and the weakness of the 
Moslems, he listened to the proposals of his adversaries,, 
and consented to a truce. The fact was, that they were 
very much exhausted, and had suffered greater loss than 
we. But they expected the arrival of reinforcements, 
while we had none to hope for. Thus it was for our 
advantage to conclude an armistice. This was recog- 
nised when Fate revealed what she had in her bosom 
for us. At this period the Sultan was very frequently ill, 
and suffered terrible pain ; but he, nevertheless, kept the 
field throughout. Each army could see the fires of the 
other ; we heard the sound of their bells^ (Nakus), and 
they heard our call to prayer. This state of things lasted 
for some time, and all ended for the best. May God hallow 
the soul of this prince and shed light upon his tomb ! 



God Almighty said (Kuran xxix. 69) : * Those who fight 
strenuously for Us we will surely guide in Our way, for, 
verily, God is with those who do well.' There are 
numerous texts in the Book exhorting us to fight for the 
faith. And, of a truth, the Sultan entertained an ardent 
passion for the Holy War ; his mind was always filled with 
it. Therefore one might swear, in absolute security and 

^ The Ndkus is a thin oblong piece of wood, which is beaten by a 
flexible rod. It is still used by the Christians in many places in 
Asiatic Turkey to summon the people to v^orship. — W. 


without risk of perjury, that from the time when he first 
issued forth to fight the infidel, he spent not a single piece 
of gold or silver except for the carrying on of the Holy 
War^ or for distribution among his troops. With him to 
wage war in God's name was a veritable passion ; his 
whole heart was filled with it, and he gave body and soul 
to the cause. He spoke of nothing else ; all his thoughts 
were of instruments of war ; his soldiers monopolised every 
idea. He showed all deference to those who talked of the 
Holy War and who encouraged the people to take part in 
it. His desire to fight in God's cause forced him to leave 
his family, his children, his native land, the place of his 
abode, and all else in his land. Leaving all these earthly 
enjoyments, he contented himself with dwelling beneath 
the shadow of a tent, shaken to the right hand and to the 
left by the breath of every wind. One night, when he was 
in the plain of Acre, it happened, in a very high wind, that 
his tent fell upon him, and had he not been in the alcove,- 
he would have lost his life. But this tended only to 
increase his passion, to strengthen his purpose, and con- 
firm his resolution. Anyone anxious to ingratiate himself 
with the Sultan had only to encourage him in his passion 
for the Holy War and to narrate to him stories connected 
with it. Therefore, a number of treatises upon this subject 
were composed for his use, and I myself wrote a work, on 
his account, on the Holy War, and the rules and precepts 
to be observed therein. I incorporated in this work all the 
verses of the Kur^n bearing upon the subject, all the tradi- 
tions which refer to it, and an explanation of all the rare 
words. His Highness valued this treatise so highly, that 

' The Jihad^ or religious war with unbelievers, is an incumbent 
religious duty, established in the Kuran, and in the Traditions as a 
Divine institution. — Hughes, ' Dictionary of Islam.' 

- See p. 9 • 


he taught the whole of its contents to his son, el-Melek 

Whilst on this subject, I will relate what I heard told. 
In the month of Zu el-K'ada, in the year 584 (December, 
1188-January, 1 1 89), he took the fortress of Kaukab/ and 
gave his troops permission to return home immediately. 
El-Melek el-'Adel- set out upon his return to Egypt at the 
head of the contingent furnished by that country, and his 
brother, the Sultan, accompanied him as far as Jerusalem, 
so that he might bid him good-bye in that city, and be 
present at ' the Feast of Sacrifice.'^ We travelled with 
him. After having attended the prayers at this festival, 
he conceived the idea of going to Ascalon with the 
Egyptian troops, and, after parting with them, of returning 
by the coast road, so as to inspect the coast lands as far as 
Acre, and restore order as he passed. We tried to make 
him give up this project, representing that after the depar- 
ture of the troops he would have but a very small number 
of men with him, whilst the Franks were assembled at 
Tyre, and that he would thus be running great risk. The 

^ Kaukab el-Hawa (Belvoir), 6| miles S. of Tiberias ; a fortress of 
the Knights' Hospitallers, built in 1182. 

2 Abu Bekr Muhammad el-Melek el-'Adel Seif ed-Din was brother 
of Salah ed-Uin, and went with him, under his uncle Shirkuh, to 
Egypt. Under Salah ed-Din he was Viceroy of Egypt, Governor of 
Aleppo (i 183- 1 186), of Kerak, and of other provinces. In 1200 he 
deposed el-Mansur, the grandson of Salah ed-Din, and made himself 
master of Egypt. In 1202 he obtaiped possession of Aleppo and 
Syria and, later, of Mesopotamia, Khelat (1207- 1208), and Yemen 
(12 1 5- 1 2 16). He was born at Damascus in 1145, and died near the 
same town in 12 18, after dividing his great empire amongst his sons 
(Ibn Khallikan, iii. 235).— W. 

3 The ''Id el-Azha^ ' feast of sacrifice,' known in Turkey and Egypt 
as Bairdm, is celebrated on the tenth day of Zu el-Hijja, the last 
month of the Moslem year. It was instituted by Muhammad in the 
second year of the Hijra, and is the great central festival of Islam. 
The sacrifice forms part of the rites of the pilgrimage to Mecca.— W. 


Sultan paid no attention to our remonstrances, but pro- 
ceeded to Ascalon, where he took leave of his brother and 
the Egyptian army. We departed with him to the coast, 
being at that time on duty about his person, and took the 
road towards Acre. The rain fell, the sea was tossed to 
and fro, and the waves wei^e like mountains, as the Most 
High has said (in the Kuran, xi. 44). This was the 
first time that I had ever seen the sea, and such was 
the impression it made upon me that if anyone had said, 
' Go but one mile upon the sea, and I will make you 
master of the world,' I should have refused to go. I 
looked upon those who go to sea to earn a few pieces of 
gold or silver as mad, and I endorsed the opinion of the 
doctors who have declared that one cannot accept the 
evidence of a man who is travelling on the ocean. Such 
were the thoughts that came into my mind at the sight of 
the terrible restlessness of the sea and the size of its waves. 
While I gave myself up to these reflections, the Sultan 
turned to me and said : ' Would you like me to tell you 
something ?' * Very much,' I replied. * Well,' he said, 
* when by God's help not a Frank is left on this coast, 
I mean to divide my territories, and to charge (my 
successors) with my last commands ; then, having taken 
leave of them, I will sail on this sea to its islands in 
pursuit of them, until there shall not remain upon the face 
of this earth one unbeliever in God, or I will die in the 
attempt/ These words made all the deeper impression 
upon me because they were so utterly opposed to wh^t I 
myself had just been feeling, and I said : 'My lord, there 
is no man in this world braver than you, nor any man more 
firmly resolved to maintain the true Faith.' ' Why do you 
say that ?' he said. I answered : * As to bravery, I see 
that your Highness is not infected with the dread which 
the sea inspires in others ; and as to your zeal for the true 


Faith, I see that your Highness is not content with driving 
the enemies of God from one particular place, but that you 
would purify the whole earth from the presence of the 
infidel. Will you now allow me to tell you what was 
passing through my own mind ?' He commanded me to 
do so, and I described to him the feelings I had experienced. 
Then I added : ' The intention of your Highness is excel- 
lent indeed. Embark your troops, and let them depart ; 
but you, who are the pillar and the bulwark of Islam, must 
not thus expose yourself and risk your life.' He replied : 

* What, I ask you, is the most glorious of deaths ?' * To 
die,' I answered, ' in the way of God.' 'Then,' he replied, 

* I strive for the door of the most glorious of deaths.' 
What noble sentiments ! How pure, how brave, how full 
of courage was his soul ! Great God ! Thou knowest he 
lavished his strength in defence of Thy Faith, and that he 
did all to deserve Thy mercy. Then be merciful unto 
him, Thou who art merciful above all others ! 




God Almighty has said : ' To those who then fought 
strenuously (to maintain the cause of God), and were 
patient, verily, thy Lord after that will be forgiving and 
mercifuP (Kuran xvi. 11 1). I have seen our Sultan, in 
the plain of Acre, in great suffering from a sickness that 
had come upon him ; an eruption of pustules appeared 
all over his body, from his waist to his knees, and this 
prevented him from sitting up. He was obliged to sit 
leaning on one side when he was in his tent, and he could 


not sit at table. Therefore he had all the dishes which 
had been prepared for him distributed among the people 
who were there. In spite of that, he repaired to his war- 
tent close to the enemy. After having drawn up his army, 
in order of battle, on the right wing, on the left, and in 
the centre, he remained on horseback from early morning 
until after mid-day prayer,^ engaged in surveying the 
battalions, and again from the third hour of the afternoon 
until sunset. During the whole time he bore most patiently 
the great pain caused by the throbbing of the tumours. I 
was astounded at this, but he kept on saying, * The pain 
leaves me when I am on horseback, and only returns when 
I dismount.' What a proof of God's favour ! 

Whilst we were at el-Kharruba,"^ after the Sultan had 
been obliged to leave Tell el-Hajl (the hill of partridges) 
on account of illness, the Franks received news of his 
departure, and sallied (from their camp) in the hope of 
striking a blow at the Moslems. It was the day on which 
they usually took their horses to the watering-place. They 
marched on as far as the wells {el-Abdr), which lay a day's 
journey away, and at the foot of Tell (el-Hajl). The Sultan 
sent his baggage back in the direction of Nazareth, and 
allowed 'Imad ed-Din,^ Lord of Sinjar, to accompany it, 
for this prince also was ill. The Sultan himself maintained 
his position. The next day, seeing that the enemy were 

' The mid-day prayer, Saldt cz-Zuhr^ is said when the sun has 
begun to decline. — W. 

2 KharriWa or Kharnuba (' carob-tiees ') was apparently on'the road 
from Nazareth at the mouth of Wddy el-Melek. Tell el-Hajl seems 
to be near the Tellel-Ajjul noticed later (p. 176), about' 10 milesJN. 
of Kharriiba, and 2 or 3 miles E. of Acre. 

3 'Imad ed-Din, son of Kotb ed-Din, Lord of Mosul, was made 
Lord of Sinjar^ the ancient Singara^ by his uncle, the celebrated 
N(ir ed-Din, about 1170, and died there in 1197. He was in posses- 
sion of Aleppo when it was taken by Salah ed-Din.— W. 


marching upon us, he mounted his horse, sick as he was, 
and drew up his men to await the attack. To el-Melek 
el-'Adel he gave the command of the right wing; to (his 
nephew) Taki ed-Din^ he entrusted the left ; and he placed 
his sons, el-Melek ez-Zaher and el-Melek el-Afdal,^ in the 
centre. He himself took up a position threatening the 
enemy's rear. Directly he came down from the hill, a 
Frank was brought up who had just been made prisoner, 
and, as the unhappy man refused to embrace Islam, he 
had him beheaded in his presence. The enemy continued 
their march to the river head, and, as they advanced, the 
Sultan made a flank movement so as to get in their rear, 
and cut them off from their camp. From time to time he 
halted to dismount, and rest under the shadow of a piece 
of cloth that was held over his head. Although the heat 
of the sun was excessive, he would not suffer a tent to be 
pitched, for fear that the enemy might learn that he was 
ill. The Franks, having reached the river head,^ halted, 
and the Sultan took up a commanding position on rising 
ground opposite to them. When day was closing, he 
ordered his men to return to the posts they had at first 

Shahanshah, the elder brother of Salah ed-Din. He was brave, and 
successful in war, and particularly distinguished himself at the battle 
of Hattin. He was Lord of Hamdt (Hamath, now Hafnah)^ Viceroy 
of Egypt (1183), and Governor of Mesopotamia. He died (1191) 
whilst besieging Manazgerd (now Melasgerd)^ one of the ancient 
cities of Armenia (Ibn Khallikan, ii. 391). — W. 

2 Abu el-Hasan 'Ali el-Melek el-Afdal Nur ed-Din was the eldest 
son of Salah ed-Din. When his father died (1193) he took posses- 
sion of Damascus, but was driven out by his brother (el-Melek el-' Aziz, 
who had seized Egypt), and his uncle, el-Melek el-'Adel. On his 
brother's death (1198) he became Atabeg^ 'guardian' to his nephew, 
el-Melek el-Mansiir ; but when el-'Adel took possession of Egypt, he 
was given Sumeisat (Samosata), where he died in 1225, aged 54 years 
(Ibn Khallikan, ii. 353).— W. 

3 The Belus River, S. of Acre. 


occupied, and to remain all night under arms. He himself 
withdrew to the rear with us, who were on duty, and had 
his tent pitched on the summit of the hill. His physician 
and I passed the night in ministering to him. His sleep, 
which was often broken, lasted till daybreak. At the sound 
of the trumpet he mounted his horse, and drew up his 
troops with a view of surrounding the enemy. Their army 
then commenced to retire, towards the camp, from the west 
bank of the river, and the Moslems pressed close upon them 
during the whole of that day. The Sultan sent forward 
those of his sons who were with him, putting his trust (in 
God) — namely, el-Melek el-Afdal and el-Melek ez-Zaher. 
One after another he sent all the members of his suite to 
the fight, until at last he had no one with him but his 
physician, myself, the inspector of military stores and 
equipment, and the young pages who bore the banners 
and standards — not a soul beside. Anyone seeing these 
standards from afar would have thought that a great 
number of people were drawn up beneath them. The 
enemy continued their march in spite of their losses. Every 
time a man was killed, they buried him at once, and. they 
carried off their wounded so that no one might know the 
extent of their loss. We watched every movement of their 
retreat, and perceived that they were sorely harassed before 
they reached the bridge^ and made a stand. Each time 
they halted the Moslems drew off, for as soon as the Franks 
formed line, and stood shoulder to shoulder, they were 
able to resist all attacks with vigour and effect. Until the 
evening, and as long as his troops were engaged with the 
enemy, the Sultan kept the saddle. He gave orders that 
this night should be passed like the last. We again took 
up our former positions, and occupied them until morning. 
This day our troops began to annoy the enemy as they 

» The bridge over the Belus, 3^ miles S.E. of Acre, north of DaiU. 


had done on the previous day, and forced them to continue 
their march, much harassed by fighting, and the loss of 
men. On nearing the camp, they received reinforcements 
that enabled them to reach it in safety. 

What patience we here see displayed ! what self-control 
this man exerted, trusting the mercy of God ! O God, it 
was Thou who didst arouse in him this patience and this 
trust ! Do not refuse him his reward, Thou who art merciful 
above all ! 

I was present on the day when he received the news of 
the death of his son Ism'ail, a young man just in the flower 
of his youth. He read the contents of the letter, but said 
nothing about it to anyone. We learnt the loss he had 
sustained through another channel. His face had given 
no sign whilst he read the despatch, but we had seen the 
tears in his eyes. 

One night, whilst we were under the walls of Safed,^ a 
fortified city to which he was laying siege, I heard him 
say: 'We will not sleep to-night until they have planted 
five mangonels,' and at each mangonel he stationed work- 
men sufficient to put it together. We spent the night with 
him most pleasantly, enjoying a charming conversation, 
whilst all the time messengers kept arriving, one after 
another, to report the progress made in the construction of 
these engines. By morning the work was finished, and 
nothing remained but to lay the ' Khanazir.'^ Throughout 

1 Sd/ed, in Upper Galilee, above the Sea of Galilee ; a fortress of 
the Knights' Hospitallers. It was considered impregnable. 

2 This word, the plural of Khanzir^ ' pig,' apparently applies to 
some part of the mangonel— possibly the lever. ' Mangonel ' was a 
generic term applied to all the smaller machines for throwing darts 
(quarrels) or stones. These machines acted by means of a great 
weight fastened to the short arm of a lever, which, being let fall, raised 
the end of the long arm with a great velocity. Other parts of the 
mangonel were the wheel {hcleb) for winding the rope attached to the 


the night, which was very long, the cold and the rain were 

I was present when he received the news of the death 
of his nephew, Taki ed-Din. We were encamped at the 
time with a detachment of light cavalry in the neighbour- 
hood of Ramleh, opposite to the Franks. Their troops 
were stationed at Yazur,^ and so near to us that they 
could have reached us by a short gallop. He summoned 
el-Melek el-'Adel, 'Alim ed-Din Suleiman Ibn Jinder, 
Sabek ed-Din Ibn ed-Daya, and 'Izz ed-Din Ibn el- 
Mokaddem : then he commanded all the people in his tent 
to withdraw a bow-shot off. He then drew out the letter 
and read it, weeping so much that those who were present 
wept with him, without knowing the cause of his sorrow. 
Then, his voice choked with tears, he announced to them 
that Taki ed-Din was dead. His lamentations, and those 
of all around, had commenced afresh when I recovered 
my presence of mind, and uttered these words : * Ask 
God's forgiveness for allowing yourselves thus to give 
way ; behold where you are, and in what you are engaged. 
Cease your weeping, and turn your thoughts to something 
else.' The Sultan replied by begging forgiveness of God 
again and again. He then enjoined us to say nothing 
on this subject to any person. Then, having called for 
a little rose-water, he bathed his eyes, and ordered a meal 
to be served, of which we were all to partake. No one 
knew anything of what had occurred until the enemy had 
withdrawn in the direction of Jaffa, We subsequently 
retired again to Natrun,^ where we had left our baggage. 

long end of the lever to raise the weight ; the pulley {bekra) through 
which the rope passed ; and the trigger {keffa) for releasing the long 
end of the lever. It has been proposed to rea.d jendzir, the popular 
form of se/idjir, ' chains,' for kha7uxzlr. — W. 

» Yaziir is 3^ miles S.E. of Jaffa, 8 miles N.W. of Ramleh. 

2 NatrUn, now Lairdn, 9'miles S.E. of Ramleh, on the Jerusalem 
road, called by the Franks ' Toron of the Knights.' 


The Sultan was tenderly attached to his young children, 
yet he deliberately left them, and was content to lead a 
hard, painful life, although it was in his power to act 
otherwise. He trusted in God to maintain the war against 
the infidels. Great God ! he forsook all to please Thee ! 
Oh, deign to grant him Thy grace and Thy mercy ! 



God Most High has said : * And as for those who pardon 
men, God loves the kind' (Kuran iii. 128). Our Sultan 
was most indulgent to all who were at fault, and very 
rarely did he show anger. I was on duty, in the presence, 
at Merj 'Ayun^ some time before the Franks attacked 
Acre — may God enable us to conquer it ! It was his 
custom to ride out each day at the hour appointed for 
mounting on horseback ; afterwards, when he dismounted, 
he had dinner served, and ate with all his suite. Then 
he retired to a specially-reserved tent, where he took a 
siesta. On awaking, he used to say his prayers, and 
remain alone with me for some time. He then read some 
passages from a collection of traditions, or a treatise on 
law. With my assistance he even read a work by Soleim 
er-Razi,2 wherein the doctor epitomises the four component 

^ MerJ ^Ayil?z, ' meadow of springs.' A plain 9 miles N.W. of 
Banids, E. of Shakif Arnun (Belfort). 

2 Abu el-Fath Soleim er-Razi was born at Rat {Rhey^ ancient Rhagae)^ 
near Tehran, the birthplace of Harun er-Rashid, and one of the great 
cities of the Seljuk sovereigns. He was noted for his learning and 
piety, and, besides works on Moslem law, wrote an explanation of 
obscure terms in the traditions. He settled at Tyre, and was drowned 
in the Red Sea whilst returning from the pilgrimage (1055), when he 
was over 80 years of age (Ibn Khallikan, i. 584). — W. 



sections of the science of jurisprudence. One day, having 
returned at the usual hour, he presided at the meal which 
he had ordered to be prepared, and was about to retire 
when he was informed that the hour of prayer was at 
hand. He returned to his seat, saying : * We will say 
the prayer, and lie down afterwards/ Then he entered 
into conversation, although he looked very weary. He 
had already dismissed all those who were not on duty. 
Shortly afterwards an old memluk, for whom he enter- 
tained great esteem, entered the tent, and presented a 
petition on behalf of the volunteers who were fighting for 
the faith. The Sultan replied : * I am tired ; let me have 
it later.' Instead of obeying, the man opened the petition 
for the Sultan to read, holding it so close to him that 
it almost touched his face. His master, seeing the name 
which stood at the head of the petition, remarked that 
this man was justly entitled to a favourable hearing. The 
memluk said : * Then let my master write his approval 
on the petition.' The Sultan answered: 'There is no 
inkstand here.' The prince was sitting just at the entrance 
to the tent, which was a large one. No one, therefore, 
could pass in, but we could see the inkstand inside. ' It 
is there, within the tent,' replied the memluk, as though 
requesting his master to fetch the inkstand himself. The 
Sultan turned, and, seeing the object he sought, cried : 
* By God ! he is right.' Then, leaning upon his left arm, 
he stretched out his right, reached the inkstand, and put 
it in front of him. Whilst he was notifying his approval 
on the petition, I remarked to him : ' God said to His 
Holy Prophet : T/ion art of a grand nature (Kuran Ixviii. 4), 
and I cannot but think your Highness. is possessed of the 
same nature as the Prophet.' He answered ; * It is not 
worth speaking of; I have satisfied a petitioner, and that 
is ample reward.' If such a thing had occurred to the 


best of common folk, it would have angered him. Where 
is there another man who would answer one under his 
authority with such gentleness ? Here, indeed, were kind- 
ness and gentleness carried to their utmost limits, and 
God wastes not the hire of those who do well (Kuran 
ix. 121). 

It sometimes happened that the cushion on which he 
was seated would be trampled under foot, so great was the 
crowd of suppliants presenting their petitions ; but he was 
never disturbed by it. One day, when I was on duty, the 
mule I rode started off, terrified at some camels, and he 
forced me against the Sultan with such violence that I 
hurt his thigh ; but he only smiled — may God be merciful 
to him ! On another occasion — on a rainy, windy day — I 
rode into Jerusalem before him on my mule, and it was so 
muddy that, as she splashed along, the mud was spattered 
even over him, and his clothes were quite spoilt. But he 
only laughed, and seeing that I wanted to get behind him, 
he would not suffer me to do so. 

The people who came to implore his help or to complain 
to him of injustice sometimes addressed him in the most 
unseemly manner, but he always listened smiling, and 
attended to their requests. Here is an instance, the like 
of which it would be difficult to find on record : The 
brother of the king of the Franks^ was marching on Jaffa, 
for our troops had withdrawn from the vicinity of the 
enemy and returned to en-Natrun. From this place to 

I Probably Henry of Champagne is here intended. He marched 
from Acre to relieve Jaffa in 1192. He married Isabel, half-sister of 
Sibyl, wife of King Guy, and was in this sense his brother. He had, 
however, been then made King of Jerusalem, Guy of Lusignan having 
been given Cyprus. King Richard had left Jaffa when Saldh ed-Din 
attacked it, but returned from Haifa by sea, and, landing August i, 
1 192, defeated Salah ed-Din's forces outside the walls. Henry of 
Champagne arrived later. See chap, clxvi.. Part H. 



Jaffa is two long or three ordinary marches for an army.^ 
The Sultan ordered his troops to march in the direction of 
Caesarea, hoping to fall in with reinforcements expected by 
the Franks, and to take any advantage possible. The 
Franks in Jaffa had notice of this manoeuvre, and the 
king of England, who was there with a large force, 
embarked the greater portion of it, and sent it by sea to 
Caesarea, fearing lest some mischance should befall the 
reinforcements. He himself remained at Jaffa, knowing 
that the Sultan and his army had withdrawn. When the 
Sultan reached the neighbourhood of Caesarea, he found 
that the reinforcements had entered that place and were 
safe, so that he could do nothing. He therefore resumed 
his march the same evening just as night began to close 
in, pushed on until daybreak, and appeared unexpectedly 
before Jaffa. The king of England was encamped outside 
the walls of the city, and had only seventeen knights with 
him and about three hundred foot-soldiers. At the first 
alarm this accursed man mounted his horse, for he was 
brave and fearless, and possessed excellent judgment in all 
military matters. Instead of retiring into the city, he 
maintained his position in face of the Moslem troops (who 
surrounded him on all sides except towards the sea), and 
drew up his own men in order of battle. The Sultan, 
anxious to make the most of the opportunity, gave the 
order to charge ; but one of the emirs,- a Kurd by birth, 
addressed him at that moment with the greatest rudeness, 
in anger at the smallness of his share of booty. The 
Sultan turned his rein and hastened away like a man in 

^ Latriin is only 20 miles from Jaffa, but as Salah ed-Din advanced 
to the 'Auja to intercept Henry of Champagne, his total march, from 
Latrun to Jafifa, was 30 miles. Boha ed-Din seems to reckon 10 miles 
a long march. 

2 This was el-Jenah. See p. 375. 


wrath, for he saw very clearly that his troops would do 
no good that day. Leaving them there, he ordered the 
tent which had been pitched for him to be struck, and his 
soldiers were withdrawn from their position. They felt 
certain that the Sultan that same day would crucify a 
great number. His son, el-Melek ez-Zaher, told me that 
he was so afraid on this occasion that he did not dare to 
come into his father's sight, although he had charged the 
enemy and pushed forward until he had received the 
countermanding order. The Sultan, he said, continued 
his retreat, and did not halt until he reached Yazur,^ 
having been marching almost the whole of the day. Here 
a small tent was pitched for him, in which he rested. The 
troops also encamped in the places where they had halted 
before, and bivouacked under slight shelter,^ as is usual in 
such cases. There was not one of the emirs but trembled 
for himself, expecting to suffer a severe punishment or 
reprimand at the hands of the Sultan. The prince added : 
* I had not the courage to enter his tent until he called for 
me. When I went in, I saw that he had just received a 
quantity of fruit that had been sent to him from Damascus. 
" Send for the emirs," he said, " let them come and taste." 
These words removed my anxiety, and I went to summon 
the emirs. They entered trembling, but he received them 
with smiles and so graciously that they were reassured and 
set at their ease. And when they left his presence they 
were ready to march as though nothing had happened. 
What true gentleness of heart ! There is nothing like it 
in these days, and the history of former kings does not 
afford us any similar instance. 

^ He only retreated 3^ miles. 

2 Sawdwimat, plural from Sawdni^ 'a cloth/ 




The Holy Prophet said : * I have been sent to make mani- 
fest in all their beauty the noble qualities of the soul.' 
When any man gave his hand to the Prophet he clasped 
it until the other withdrew it. And so, too, our Sultan 
was very noble of heart ; his face expressed kindliness, his 
modesty was great, and his politeness perfect. No visitor 
ever came to him without being given to eat, and receiving 
what he desired. He greeted everyone, even infidels, politely. 
For instance, after the conclusion of peace in the month of 
Shawal, in the year 588 (October to November, A.D. 1192), 
he left Jerusalem to journey to Damascus, and whilst he 
was on his way he saw the Prince of Antioch, who had 
come up unexpectedly, and was standing at the entrance 
of his tent. This prince had come to ask something from 
him, and the Sultan gave him back el-'Amk,^ which terri- 
tory he had acquired in the year 584 (A.D. ii'88-ii89), at 
the time of the conquest of the coast-lands. So, too, I was 
present at Nazareth when the Sultan received the visit of 
the Lord of Sidon ; he showed him every mark of respect, 
treated him with honour, and admitted him to his own 
table. He even proposed to him that he should embrace 
Islam, set before him some of the beauties of our religion, 
and urged him to adopt it. 

He always gave a kind reception to sheikhs, to all 
learned and gifted men, and to the various influential 

' The great plain of e/-'Amk was known in ancient times as the 
Plain of Antioch. It lies N.E. of the city, and is the widening out of 
the valley of the Kara Su. It was the scene of Aurelian's victory over 
Zenobia (a.d. 273), and within its limits is the Lake of Antioch. — W. 


persons who came to see him. He enjoined us to present 
to him every notable sheikh passing through the camp, so 
that he might exercise his generosity. In the year 584 
(A.D. 1 1 88- 1 189) there came a man, who united to great 
learning the practices of a Sufi.^ He was an important 
personage, whose father was Lord of Toriz.^ He had re- 
nounced his father's rank to give himself up to study and 
the practice of good works. He had just performed the 
pilgrimage (Ifdj) and visited Jerusalem ; then, having in- 
spected that city, and having seen there works of the 
Sultan, he conceived the wish to see him. He arrived in 
the camp, and entered my tent unannounced. I made 
haste to bid him welcome, and asked what motive had 
brought him thither. He answered that the sight of the 
wonderful and beautiful works of the Sultan had inspired 
him with the desire to see him. I reported this to the 
Sultan the same night, and he ordered the man to be pre- 
sented to him. He learnt from his lips a tradition concern- 
ing the Prophet, and listened to a discourse pronounced by 
his visitor, who exhorted him to practice good works. 
This man passed the night with me in my tent, and after 
morning prayer took his leave. I remarked to him that 
it would be very unseemly to depart without bidding the 

^ A Sufi is a man who professes the mystic principles of the 
Tasawwiif, or Sufiism. The principal occupation of a Sufi, whilst in 
the body, is meditation on the Unity of God, the remembrance of 
God's names, and progressive advancement in the journey of life, so 
as to attain unification with God. Human life is likened to a journey, 
and the seeker after God to a traveller. The first stage of the 
* traveller ' is ' service,' that is, to serve God as the first step towards a 
knowledge of Him. The last stage is death, which is regarded as 
' extinction,' or total absorption into the Deity. The great object of 
the Sufi mystic is to lose his own identity. Having effected this, per- 
fection is attained. — Hughes, ' Dictionary of Islam.' 

2 Torts, or Tavrts, the modern Tabriz, the capital of Azerbijan in 
Persia. — W. 


Sultan farewell, but he would not yield to my remon- 
strances, and carried out his original purpose. ' I have 
accomplished my desire,' said he, ' with regard to the 
prince ; my only objegt in coming here was to visit 
and see him ;' and he departed forthwith. Some days 
afterwards the Sultan inquired after him, and I told him 
what had occurred. He was much vexed that I had not 
informed him of the visitor's departure. * What !' cried he, 
* am I to receive the visit of a man like that and let him 
depart with no experience of my liberality ?* He expressed 
such strong disapproval of my conduct, that I wrote to 
Mohi ed-Din,^ Kadi of Damascus, charging him to seek the 
man out and give him a letter I enclosed, which was written 
with my own hand. In this note I informed the holy man 
of the Sultan's displeasure on learning that he had left 
without seeing him again, and I begged him, in the name 
of our friendship, to return. He arrived when I was least 
thinking of him, and I conducted him at once to the 
Sultan, who received him graciously, kept him for several 
days, and sent him away laden with gifts — a robe of 
honour, a suitable riding-animal, and a great number of 
garments for distribution amongst the members of his 
family, and his disciples and neighbours. He gave him 
also money for the expenses of his journey. Ever after- 
wards the man displayed the keenest gratitude to the 
Sultan, and offered up the most sincere prayers for the 
preservation of his life. 

I was present one day when a Frank prisoner was 

' Abu el-Maali Muhammad Mohi ed-Din, generally known as Ibn 
ez-Zaki, was a descendant of the Khalif Othman, and a member of the 
tribe of the Koreish. He was well versed in law, literature, and the 
sciences, and was highly esteemed by Salah ed-Din. He was selected 
to pronounce the Khutba at the first Friday prayer after the capture 
of Jerusalem. He died in 1202. His father, surnamed Zaki ed-Din, 
was also Kadi of Damascus (Ibn Khallikan, ii. 633). — W. 


brought before him. This man was in such a state of ex- 
citement that his terror was visible in every feature. The 
interpreter asked him the cause of his fear, and God put 
the following answer in the mouth of the unfortunate 
fellow : * Before I saw his face I was greatly afraid, but 
now that I am in the presence (of the prince) and can see 
him, I am certain that he will do me no harm.' The 
Sultan, moved by these words, gave him his life, and sent 
him away free. 

I was attending the prince on one of the expeditions he 
used to make on the flanks of the enemy, when one of the 
scouts brought up a woman, rending her garments, weep- 
ing and beating her breast without ceasing. ' This woman,' 
the soldier said, ' came out from among the Franks, and 
asked to be taken to the Sultan ; so I brought her here.' 
The Sultan asked her, through his interpreter, what was 
the matter, and she replied : ' Some Moslem thieves got 
into my tent last night and carried off my child, a little 
girl. All night long I have never ceased begging for help, 
and our princes advised me to appeal to the King of the 
Moslems. " He is very merciful," they said. " We will allow 
you to go out to seek him and ask for your daughter." 
Therefore they permitted me to pass through the lines, and 
in you lies my only hope of finding my child.' The Sultan 
was moved by her distress ; tears came into his eyes, and, 
acting from the generosity of his heart, he sent a messenger 
to the market-place of the camp, to seek her little one 
and bring her away, after repaying her purchaser the price 
he had given. It was early morning when her case was 
heard, and in less than an hour the horseman returned, 
bearing the little girl on his shoulder. As soon as the 
mother caught sight of her, she threw herself on the 
ground, rolling her face in the dust, and weeping so 
violently that it drew tears from all who saw her. She 


raised her eyes to heaven, and uttered words which we did 
not understand. We gave her back her daughter, and she 
was mounted to return to the enemy's army. 

The Sultan was very averse to the infliction of corporal 
punishment on his servants, even when they cheated him 
beyond endurance. On one occasion two purses filled with 
Egyptian gold-pieces had been lodged in the treasury ; 
these were stolen, and two purses full of copper coins left 
in their place. All he did was to dismiss the people em- 
ployed in that department from his service. 

In the year 583 (a.d. 1187), at the battle of Hattin — a 
famous day's fight of which, please God, we shall speak in 
its proper place — Prince Arnat (Renaud de Chatillon), 
Lord of el-Kerak,i and the king of the Franks of the sea- 
coast, were both taken prisoners, and the Sultan com- 
manded them to be brought before him. This accursed 
Arnat was a great infidel, and a very strong man. On one 
occasion, when there uas a truce between the Moslems and 
the Franks, he treacherously attacked and carried off a 
caravan that passed through his territory, coming from 
Egypt. He seized these people, put them to torture, and 
put some of them in grain-pits {iiietamh') ^ and imprisoned 
some in narrow cells. When they objected that there was 
a truce between the two peoples, he replied: 'Ask your 

^ Rdnaud de Chatillon came to Palestine in 1148 with Louis VII. of 
France. He became ruler of Antioch next year, having married Con- 
stance, the heiress of Bohemund II., and widow of Raymond of Poitou. 
He was taken prisoner by Manuel Comnenos at Malmistra, November 
23, 1 160, and by Nur ed-Din,on August 12, 1 163. He remained prisoner 
fourteen years at Aleppo, and on his release married the widow of 
Humphrey of Toron, and so acquired the great fief of Oultre Jourdan, 
including the castles qf Kerak and Shobek (Montreal), commanding 
the Haj Road to Mecca. He was a bitter enemy of the Moslems, 
and marched on Medina in 11 82-1 183, escaping with difficulty back 
to Kerak.gHe seized a Moslem caravan from Mecca, near Shobek, in 
1 187, during a truce with Salah ed-Din. — See ' Jacques de Vitry,' p. 99. 


Muhammad to deliver you.' The Sultan, to whom these 
words were reported, took an oath to slay the infidel with 
his own hand, if God should ever place him in his power. 
The day of the battle of Hattin God delivered this man 
into the hands of the Sultan, and he resolved at once to 
slay him, that he might fulfil his oath. He commanded 
him to be brought before him, together with the king. 
The latter complained of thirst, and the Sultan ordered a 
cup of sherbet to be given him. The king, having drunk 
some of it, handed the cup to Arnat, whereupon the Sultan 
said to the interpreter : ' Say to the king, " It is you who give 
him drink, but I give him neither to drink nor to eat." ' By 
these words he wished it to be understood that honour for- 
bade him to harm any man who had tasted his hospitality. 
He then struck him on the neck^ with his own hand, to 
fulfil the vow he had made. After this, when he had taken 
Acre, he delivered all the prisoners, to the number of about 
four thousand, from their wretched durance, and sent them 
back to their own country and their homes, giving each of 
them a sum of money for the expenses of his journey. 
This is what I have been told by many persons, for I was 
not present myself when it took place. 

The Sultan was of a sociable disposition, of a sweet 
temper, and delightful to talk with. He was well 
acquainted with the pedigrees of the old Arabs, and with 
the details of their battles ; he knew all their adventures ; 
he had the pedigrees of their horses at his fingers' ends, 
and was master of all curious and strange lore. Thus in 
conversation with him people always heard things which 
they could never have learned from others. In company, 
he put everyone at their ease. He comforted those who 
were in trouble, questioned those who were ill on the nature 
of their malady, on the treatment they had adopted, on 

I He was then beheaded by the slaves. See p. 115. 


their diet, and on the changes they experienced in their 
system. He insisted strictly upon due seemliness in con- 
versation, never suffering anyone to be spoken of except 
with respect ; he would talk with none but persons of good 
conversation, lest his ears should be offended ; having his 
tongue under perfect control, he never gave way to abusive 
language ; he could also control his pen, and never made 
use of cutting words in writing to a Moslem. He was 
most strict in the fulfilment of his promises. 

When an orphan was brought before him, he always 
exclaimed : * May the mercy of God be upon the two 
(parents) who have left this child behind them !' Then he 
would lavish comfort upon him, and allow him the same 
emoluments that his father had enjoyed. If the orphan 
had an experienced and trustworthy person amongst his 
relations he would charge him with the care of the boy ; 
if not, he would deduct, from the father's emoluments, 
sufficient for the orphan's maintenance, and then place him 
with some person who superintended his education and 
bringing-up. He never saw an old man without showing 
him the kindest marks of respect and good-will, and making 
him some present. And all these noble qualities remained 
undimmed in his heart until God recalled him to Himself, 
and removed him to the throne of His mercy, to the 
abode of His grace. 

This is but a meagre sketch of his lofty disposition and 
of his noble character. My aim has been to be concise, 
and to avoid prolixity lest I should weary my readers. I 
have mentioned nothing that I have not witnessed, adding 
thereto information obtained from credible authorities 
which I have myself tested. What 1 have here told is but 
a part of that which I was able to observe whilst in the 
Sultan's service, and is little indeed in comparison with all 
that could be told by his life-long friends, and those who 


have grown old in his service. But what I have given will 
convince an intelligent reader of the grandeur and purity 
of the prince's character and feelings. 

Now, having brought to a close the first part of my 
work, I will pass to the second, in which I shall treat of 
the changes of fortune experienced by the Sultan, and of 
his battles and conquests. May God hallow his soul and 
shed the light of His mercy upon his tomb ! 


In which are set forth the Changes of Fortune 
Experienced by the Sultan, and the History 
of his Conquests. 


his first campaign in EGYPT, IN WHICH HE SERVED 

A CERTAIN man, named ed-Dargham, rebelled against 
Shawer,^ Vizier of the Egyptians, with the view of 
depriving him of the viziership. Shawer collected a great 
number of men to oppose him, but could not overcome 
him, even with the support of this army. He was driven 
out of Cairo by his adversary, and his eldest son, Tai, 
perished in the revolution. Dargham then assumed the 

^ Abu Shuja Shawer es-S'adi, the Arab Governor of Upper Egypt, 
killed the vizier of el-'Adid the Fatimite Khalif of Egypt, and took 
possession of the vizierate. He was driven from office by Abu 
el-Ashbal Dargham, the prefect of the palace, and fled for protection 
to Nur ed-Din, the Lord of Syria. He returned to Egypt with Shirkuh 
and his troops, and in the battle that ensued, Dargham was killed 
(1164). Shawer then became vizier, but on the occasion of Shirkuh's 
third expedition to Egypt, he was killed (1168) by Salah ed-Din and 
'Izz ed-Din Jurdik (Ibn Khallikan, i. 608).— W. 


viziership. It was the custom when anyone successfully 
raised the standard of revolt against a vizier (of the 
Fatimite khalifs) to submit to the victor, and establish him 
with full authority in the office for which he had fought. 
Indeed, the whole power of the government lay in the 
vizier's army, and the vizier had the title of Sultan. They 
(the Khalifs) took care not to look into matters too 
closely, and had followed this policy from the first es- 
tablishment of their dominion. Shawer, thus defeated 
and driven from Cairo, set out at once for Syria, and 
presenting himself at the court of Nur ed-Din,^ ibn Zenghi, 
asked for troops to fight his enemies. Nur ed-Din ordered 
Asad ed-Din^ to proceed to the strong city of Misr,^ and 
when there to maintain the rights of the man who had 
asked his assistance, and to inquire into the condition and 

^ Abu el-Kasim Mahmud el-Melek el-'Adel Nur ed-Din was son of 
Imad ed-Din Zenghi. On the death of his father (1146) he took pos- 
session of Aleppo, whilst his brother occupied Mosul. In 11 54 he 
took Damascus, Hamath, Baalbek, and Membij ; and by 1164 he had 
gained possession of Harim, 'Azaz, and Banias. In 1173 he took 
Mar'ash and Behesne. He sent Shirkuh and Salah ed-Din to Egypt 
three times, and his name was struck on coins and pronounced in the 
Khutba (Friday sermon) in Egypt when Salah ed-Din was his Viceroy 
in that country. He was an enlightened prince, and was respected 
by both Christians and Moslems. He died in 1174, aged 56 (Ibn 
Khallikan, iii. 338).— W. 

- Abu el-Harith Shirkuh el-Melek el-Mansur Asad ed-Din was uncle 
of Salah ed-Din. He was sent to Egypt by Nur ed-Din in 1163-1164, 
and returned to Damascus in 1164 after defeating Dargham, and 
restoring Shawer to the vizierate. In 1167 he again went to Egypt, 
and fought the celebrated battle of el-Bdbein. He entered Egypt for 
the third time in 1168, and, when Shawer was killed, became vizier to 
the Khalif, el-'Adid. He died at Cairo in 1169, and was succeeded by 
Salah ed-Din, who had accompanied him in all his expeditions (Ibn 
Khallikan, i. 626).— W. 

3 Misr^ or Masr, as it is usually pronounced, is used both of old 
Cairo and of Egypt generally. Misr el-Mahrnsah probably refers to 


resources of the country. This took place in the year 558 
(a.D. 1 163). Asad ed-Din at once commenced prepara- 
tions for the campaign, and when he set out for Egypt, 
took his nephew (Salah ed-Din) with him. The latter 
went against his inclination, but his uncle required him to 
command the army and assist him with advice. They 
arrived at Misr, with Shawer, on the second day of the 
month Jomada II. (May 8) of the above year. Their 
arrival caused a great sensation, and struck terror into 
the inhabitants. Shawer, supported (by Asad ed-Din), 
triumphed over his rival, and was re-established in office. 
(Asad ed-Din) enforced the acceptance of a treaty on his own 
terms, and, having re-established (Shawer's) authority, and 
collected exact information as to the condition and resources 
of the country, set out on his return (to Syria). The hope 
of making himself master of Egypt had taken root in his 
heart, for he saw that it was a land wanting in men (worthy 
of the name), and that the direction of public affairs was 
left to chance and imbecile management. He commenced 
his march to Syria on the 7th of Zu el-Hijja of the above 
year (November 6, 1164). He had come to no decision, 
and settled no question without first consulting Salah 
ed-Din, so much did he think of the felicity and good 
fortune that seemed to follow him, and so highly did he 
esteem his nephew's good judgment and the success that 
attended all his undertakings. On his return to Syria, he 
gave himself up to making his plans and meditating on the 
means he might employ to justify his visiting Egypt again. 
His thoughts were entirely occup^d with this project, and 
until the year 562 (a.D. 1166) he continued to discuss it, 
and to lay the ground-work of his plans, with (his 
sovereign) el-Melek el-'Adel Nur ed-Din ibn Zenghi. 




ASAD ED-DiN used very often to speak publicly about 
his plans with regard to Egypt. Shawer heard of them, 
and, fearing lest the country should fall into the hands 
of the Turks,^ and knowing full well that Asad ed-Din 
would most certainly invade the land and take possession 
of it, he wrote to the Franks and made an agreement 
with them. By this treaty they undertook to enter Egypt, 

^ In January, 11 67, Niir ed-Din sent Asad ed-Din Shirkuh a second 
time to Egypt, with orders to take possession of the country. Shawer, 
the vizier of the Khalif, hearing of Nur ed-Din's preparations, con- 
cluded a treaty with Amalric (Amaury), King ef -Jerusalem, under 
which the Franks were to assist the Khalif with an army. Shirkuh 
marched by the IVddi el-Ghasdl, and, whilst crossing the desert, was 
caught in a violent storm. He lost many men, and, after abandoning 
baggage and provisions, his army arrived in a crippled state before 
Atflh, on the right bank of the Nile above Cairo. The Franks, whose 
policy it was to lengthen the war, remained near Cairo, and gave 
Shirkuh's men time to recruit. At last they attacked Shirkuh, and 
forced his entrenchments, but did not follow up their victory. Shirkuh 
commenced his retreat to Syria, but, suddenly retracing his steps, fell 
upon the combined force of Franks and Egyptians whilst it was 
■encamped at el-Bdbein., near Tura, about six miles south of Cairo. 
He gained a complete victory — often referred to afterwards as the 
' day,' or ' event,' of el-Babein— and all Egypt fell into his hands. He 
afterwards evacuated the country in consequence of a treaty with the 
Franks ; but in the following year (i 168) he returned and permanently 
occupied Egypt. 

The omission of any mention of the battle in this chapter is remark- 
able. Possibly the author was unwilling to enlarge upon a victory in 
which his hero only played a subordinate part. — W. 

2 Nur ed-Din's father, Imad ed-Din Zenghi was one of the most 
eminent emirs under the Seljuk Turks ; and Nur ed-Din was regarded 
as a Turk by the Arabs in Egypt. — W. 



which was placed in their hands without reserve, and 
to give every assistance to the vizier, who would thus be 
enabled to crush his enemies, and relieve himself of all 
apprehension. Asad ed-Din and Nur ed-Din became very 
anxious when they heard this news, for they were afraid 
that if the infidels once occupied Misr, they would take 
possession of the whole country. Asad ed-Din began his 
preparations for a campaign ; Nur ed-Din furnished him 
with troops, and constrained Salah ed-Din, against his wish, 
to accompany his uncle. They commenced their march 
on the 1 2th of the month Rabi'a I., in the year 562 
(January 6, A.D. 1167), and entered Egyptian territory 
at the very same time as the Franks. Shawer and all the 
Egyptians with him joined the Franks to give battle to 
Asad ed-Din. Many skirmishes and battles took place 
between the two armies ; then the Franks and Asad ed- 
Din both left Egypt. What decided the Franks to leave 
was the news that Nur ed-Din had invaded their territory 
at the head of his forces, and taken El-Muneitera.^ Fearing 
for their possessions (in Syria), they left Egypt. Asad ed- 
Din made up his mind to return on account of the small- 
ness of his army compared with the combined forces of the 
Franks and Egyptians, and on account of the fatigues they 
had undergone, and the dangers they had encountered. 
He did not retire until he had treated with the Franks for 
the evacuation of the country. It was towards the end of 
the (Moslem) year that he started for Syria. His ardent 
desire to make himself master of Egypt was now 
strengthened by the fear that the Franks would occupy 
that country. He knew that they had informed them- 
selves, as he had done, of the condition of Egypt, and were 
as conversant as he was with all that related to it. He 
waited, therefore, in Syria, full of unrest,* his mind torn by 

' el-Muneiiera^ 'the little watch-tower.' See p. 51, n. 2. 


ambition, confident that Fate was leading him towards 
something (the possession of Egypt) which was reserved 
for another.^ 



In the month of Rejeb (April-May, A.D. 1167), after Asad 
ed-Din had departed (for Egypt), Nur ed-Din took the 
castle of el-Muneitera, and demolished the fortress of 
Akaf in the Berriya.^ In the month of Ramadan (June- 
July), he met his brother Kotb ed-Din^ (Prince of Mosul), 
and Zein ed-Din^ (Prince of Arbela) at Hamah,^ with a 
view of invading the enemy's territory. Having pene- 
trated into the regions occupied by the Franks, they 

^ In 1 167 King Amaury of Jerusalem was allied with the Fatimite 
Khalif of Egypt ; but, after his marriage with Maria, grand-niece of 
Manuel Comnenos, he agreed with the Greek Emperor to attempt 
the conquest of Egypt. The Knights Hospitallers assisted, but the 
Templars refused to break the treaty with Egypt. Bilbeis was taken, 
November 3, 1167, but King Amaury retreated on hearing that Nur 
ed-Din had again sent Shirkuh to Egypt with a large force. 

2 The Berriya^ ' outer land,' or ' desert,' was a term applied to the 
region between Damascus and Emesa. el-Mu7ieitera near Tripoli, 
according to Yakut, was a fortress in Syria. Akdf'v^ not known. 

3 Kotb ed-Din Maudud, el-'Araj, 'the lame,' son of Zenghi, succeeded 
his brother, Seif ed-Din Ghazi, as Lord of Mosul in 1149, and died in 
1 170. He is noted as having imprisoned his vizier, the celebrated 
Jemal ed-Din (Ibn Khallikan, iii. 458).— W. 

4 Zein ed-Din 'Ali Kuchuk was a Turkoman who had gained posses- 
sion of Arbela (now Erbil^ about 52 miles from Mosul on the road to 
Baghdad) and other towns in that part of the country. He retained 
Arbela, and gave the other towns he had taken to the sons of Kotb 
ed-Din, the Lord of Mosul. Zein ed-Din was remarkable for his great 
strength and courage (Ibn Khallikan, ii. 535). — W. 

5 Ha/nah, the ancient Hamath^ in the Orontes valley. 



demolished the castle of Hunin/ in the month of Shawal 
(July- August) of the same year. In the month of Zu 
el-'Kada (August-September), Asad ed-Din returned from 
P2gypt. The cause of this (the third expedition into Egypt) 
was the action of th*e Franks, whom may God confound ! 
They assembled their footmen and horsemen, and marched 
on Egypt, thus breaking all the promises they had made 
to the Egyptians and Asad ed-Din when they agreed to 
the treaty of peace ; and this they did in the hope of 
obtaining possession of Egypt. On receiving this news, 
Nur ed-Din and Asad ed-Din felt that they could no 
longer remain inactive, and they began to organize a fresh 
expedition to that country. Nur ed-Din contributed his 
share in money and men, but he did not take part in it 
personally, being afraid that the Franks would invade his 
own dominions, and also because he had just received from 
Mosul news of a most important event — the death of Zein 
ed-Din 'Ali,^ the son of Bektikin, who had died in the 
month of Zu el-Hijja, in the year 563 (September-October, 
A.D. 1 168). This chief had granted to the Atabeg Kotb 
ed-Din^ all the strongholds he possessed, with the excep- 
tion of Arbela,* a city which the Atabeg Zenghi had 
bestowed upon him. Therefore, Nur ed-Din turned his 
ambition in this direction, and allowed the army to depart 
(for Egypt). Asad ed-Din, for his part, contributed to the 
strength of the army by his own presence, by supplies of 
money, and by taking with him his brothers, the people of 
his household, and the men whom he kept as retainers. 

^ Htinin^ in Upper Galilee, 9 miles S.W. of Banias. 

2 See p. 51. 

3 Kotb ed-Din (see p. 51) was Atabeg or ' guardian' to a son of one 
of the Seljuk Sultans, 

4 Arbela {Erbil) gave its name to the battle in which Darius was 
defeated by Alexander. It is now a Turkish military post, and an 
important road-centre. — W. 


The Sultan (Salah ed-Din) said to me one day : * Of all 
men, I was the one who least wished to accompany the 
expedition, and it was not of my own accord that I went 
with my uncle.' Such is the meaning of the words of the 
Most High : ' Per adventure that ye hate a thing while it is 
good for you' {Kuvdin n. 21'^). When Shawer learnt that 
the Franks were marching upon Egypt with the purpose 
(we have set forth), he sent to ask Asad ed-Din for im- 
mediate assistance. Asad ed-Din set out in all haste, and 
arrived at Misr in the course of the month of Rabi'a I., 
564 (December, 1168 — January, 1169). In the month of 
Moharrem (October) of this year, Nur ed-Din obtained 
possession of the fortress of J'aber^ from Ibn Malek, whom 
he had taken prisoner, in exchange for Seruj,'^ the Bab 
Biza'a,^and El-Meluha. In the same month died Yaruk, a 
chief whose name is preserved in that of the village of el- 
Yarukiya.* When the Franks learnt that Asad ed-Din 
had come into Egypt, they made a treaty with the govern- 
ment of that country, turned back, and were obliged to 
desist. Asad ed-Din remained there, and was visited fre- 
quently by Shawer. This minister had promised to in- 
demnify him for the expenses of the expedition, but he 

^ Kalehfaber, or Dusar (ancient Dausaria), on the left bank of the 
Euphrates, N. of Rakka^ and about i mile from the river. It was 
taken by the Seljuk Sultan Mehk Shah. Zenghi, the founder of the 
Zenghid Dynasty of Mosul, was murdered by his eunuchs whilst 
besieging it. — W. 

2 SerilJ, the Serug of Gen. xi. 20, lies between Harran and the 

3 Baby or Bap, is about 20 miles from Aleppo, on the road to 
Membij. In a mosque on the hill above it are shown the tombs of 
Nebi Haskil (Ezekiel) and 'Akil, a brother of the Khalif 'Ali. Bizd'a 
is about a mile further on, and is apparently on an ancient site. — W. 

4 El- Yardklya was a large quarter lying outside Aleppo, in which 
Yaruk, one of the Turkoman Emirs of Nur ed-Din, built a palace and 


gave him nothing. Then the claws of the Lwn of the Faith 
(Asad ed-Din) fastened themselves upon Egypt. He knew 
that if the Franks found a favourable opportunity, they 
would take possession of the country ; he felt that constant 
expeditions to drive them out would be unwise ; he saw 
clearly that Shawer was playing, now with him, now with 
the Franks ; and he was convinced that, so long as the 
vizier remained, he would be unable to possess himself of 
Egypt. He therefore resolved to have him arrested on 
one of his visits. For all except Asad ed-Din used to 
visit Shawer, and do him homage, but Shawer himself paid 
visits to Asad ed-Din. On these occasions he used to come 
on horseback, with drums, trumpets, and banners, accord- 
ing to the custom of the viziers of that country, but none 
of the officers dared lay a hand upon him. It was Salah 
ed-Din himself who arrested him, and in this wise : Shawer 
had set out to visit them, and (Salah ed-Din), having 
mounted his horse, went to meet him. He then rode by 
his side, and as they were going along, he seized him by 
the collar, and commanded his men to fall upon the 
vizier's retinue, who took to flight, and were stripped and 
plundered by the soldiers. Shawer was led a prisoner to 
a tent set apart. Very soon the Egyptians sent a eunuch 
of the palace, bearing a written message, in which they 
demanded the head of the prisoner. Shawer was beheaded, 
and his head sent to them. The Egyptians then sent a 
vizier's robe to Asad ed-Din, who put it upon him, and 
betook himself to the citadel, where he was accepted, and 
established as vizier. In this the Egyptians were acting 
in accordance with their custom of bestowing the vizier- 
ship on the man who conquered his adversary. Asad ed- 
Din's nomination took place on the seventeenth of the 
month Rabi'a II., 564 (January 18, A.D. 1169). From that 
time Asad ed-Din exercised supreme authority, and en- 


trusted the general management of affairs to Salah ed-Din, 
on account of his great abilities, and the wide knowledge, 
good judgment, and administrative talents he displayed. 



AsAD ED-DiN was a very hearty eater, and was so fond 
of rich dishes that he frequently suffered from surfeit and 
indigestion. He used to recover, after suffering great pain ; 
but, when he was attacked by severe illness, it induced 
inflammation of the throat, of which he died. This took 
place on the 22nd of Jornada H. in the above year (March 23, 
A.D. 1169). After his death Salah ed-Din was invested 
with supreme authority. The Sultan soon had the satis- 
faction of seeing his government respected, and order 
established on all sides. He spent money lavishly, won 
all hearts, and brought everyone into obedience to his rule. 
In recognition of the blessings which God had vouchsafed 
to him, he gave up wine and the pleasures of the world, 
and devoted himself to serious business and to work. He 
never abandoned the course he then adopted ; he showed 
an industry which increased day by day until God sum- 
moned him to appear before His mercy. I have heard 
him say, ' When God allowed me to obtain possession of 
Egypt with so little trouble, I understood that He purposed 
to grant me the conquest of the Sdhel^ for He Himself 

^ Under the word Sdhel, * plain,' the author refers to those countries 
on the Syrian coast which were then occupied by the Franks. Arab 
historians often employ the word as a name for Palestine and Phcenicia. 
Henceforth this word is rendered coast. 


implanted the thought in my mind.' Therefore, directly 
his authority was firmly established, he began to send 
expeditions into the territories of the Franks, in the dis- 
trict round el-Kerak and esh-Shobek.^ The clouds of his 
munificence and liberality poured down their waters so 
copiously that there has never been recorded in history 
munificence such as he displayed when he was a vizier, 
responsible to the Egyptian government. He took great 
pains to establish the true faith [sunnd) more firmly (in 
Egypt),^ by aid of the 'ulema, jurists, dervishes, and fakirs. 
People came to visit him from every side, and flocked to 
his court from all parts. He never disappointed the hopes 
of a visitor, nor allowed him to depart with empty hands. 

As soon as Nur ed-Din heard that Salah ed-Din was 
established as Sultan, he took away the city of Emesa^ 
from the officers whom Asad ed-Din had left in charge. 
This occurred in the month of Rejeb, in the year 564 
(April, A.D. 1 169). 



When the Franks heard what had happened to the 
true believers and to their own armies, and saw the 

^ Kerak^ on the precipice E. of the Dead Sea, was a strong castle 
built by King Fulk about 1140. ShSbck^ N. of Petra, called Montreal 
by Franks, was buik in 11 16 by Baldwin I. 

2 Salah ed-Din was a Sunni Moslem of the Shaf'ai sect. The 
Fatimite Khalifs of Egypt were Shi'ah Moslems not recognising the 
Khalif of Baghdad. 

3 Emesa^ now Horns, on the right of the Orontes, between B'albek 
and Hamath in Syria. 


Sultan (Salah ed-Din) establishing his authority in Egypt 
upon a firm basis, they were convinced that he would 
obtain possession of their dominions, would lay waste 
their dwelling-places, and wipe away all traces of their 
rule. Therefore they joined themselves with the Greeks, 
intending to invade the land of Egypt, and gain possession 
of it. They determined to commence by an attack upon 
Damietta, as the master of that place would command 
both land and sea ; and, if they could occupy it, the city 
would serve as a depot and place of retreat. They brought 
with them mangonels, movable towers, arbalists, besieging 
trngines,^ and other machines.^ The Franks in Syria, when 
they heard this news, took heart of grace, and surprised 
the Moslems in the fortress of 'Akkar,^ which they suc- 
ceeded in taking, and made the governor prisoner. This 
man was one of Nur ed-Din's memluks ; his name was 
Khotlokh, the standard-bearer. This took place in the 
month of Rabi'a II. of the same year (January, 1169). 
In the month of Rejeb (April) occurred the death of el- 
'Imadi, an old follower of Nur ed-Din and his grand 
chamberlain. He was then lord of B'albek and of Tadmor 

^ For mangonels see p. 31. The movable towers, or ' belfreys,' were 
brought in pieces, which were framed together. They were then 
pushed across the ditch of the fortress, which was filled up with hurdles 
and fascines to facilitate their passage. The towers protected the 
' besieging engines ' with which the walls were battered, and the mining 
operations. The besieged made every effort to burn or overthrow 
them. The arbalists (Fr. arbalet^ Lat. arcus balistarms), or cross- 
bows, are supposed to have been introduced into France by the first 
Crusaders, and into the English army by Richard I. Ihey killed 
point-blank at 40-60 yards, and with elevation at 120-160 yards. — W. 

^ Manuel Comnenos sent 150 galleys to aid King Amaury at 
Damietta. The town was not taken, and a treaty with Salah ed-Din 
was signed in December, 1170. 

3 'Akkdr, on the Lebanon, N.E. of Tripoli. 


When Nur ed-Din learnt that the Franks had taken the 
field and sat down before the walls of Damietta, he resolved 
to distract their attention ; therefore in the month of Sh'aban 
of this year (565, April-May, a.d. 1170), he blockaded the 
fortress of el-Kerak ; then, hearing that the Franks of the 
coast were marching upon him, he raised the siege and 
advanced to meet them ; but they did not give him time 
to come up. After this he received news of the death of 
Mejed ed-Din Ibn ed-Daya,^ at Aleppo, in the month of 
Ramadan 565 (May-June, A.D. 1 170). The event touched 
him nearly, for this officer was the chief of his rulers. 
Therefore he set out to return to Syria. On arriving at 
'Ashtera,^ he learnt that on the 12th of Shawal this year a 
great earthquake had taken place at Aleppo and destroyed 
a great part of the country. He then set out for Aleppo, 
and heard that his brother Kotb ed-Din^ had just died at 
Mosul. This event occurred on the 22nd of Zu el-Hijja of 
the above year (6 September, a.d. i 170). He received these 
tidings at Tell-Basher,* and the same night he started for 

Sultan Salah ed-Din, understanding that the enemy 
meant to attack Damietta with all the forces at their 
command, threw into that city footmen and horsemen of 
well-known courage, provisions for the garrison, engines 
of war and arms, and, indeed, everything that might enable 
it to hold out. He promised the troops whom he stationed 

^ He was Governor of Aleppo, and one of the ed-Daya family from 

2 ^Ashtera is the present Tell ^Ashterah (Ashtaroth Carnaim) in 
Bashan, on the road from Kerak to Damascus. See p. 109. 

3 Kotb ed-Din Maudud, son of Zenghi. See p. 51. 

4 Tell Basher, about two days' journey N. of Aleppo, is now Salasi 
Kaleh, a large mound with ruins near the village of Tulbashar. It is 
the) Turbessel of the Crusaders, and the| place to which Jocelyn II. 
removed when Zenghi took Edessa in 1144. — W. 


there to bring them reinforcements and appliances of war, 
and to repulse the enemy if they took up a position 
threatening the city. The number of his gifts and presents 
(on this occasion) was immense, but he was at that time a 
vizier exercising absolute authority, whose commands were 
implicitly obeyed. The Franks, having encamped against 
Damietta at the date we have given above, made a vigorous 
assault on that place, but whilst engaged with the garrison 
on one side, they had to sustain the onslaught of the 
cavalry which the Sultan hurled against them on the 
other. God gave the victory to the Moslems through the 
instrumentality of the Sultan, and in consequence of his 
well-chosen measures for the reinforcement of the garrison. 
The Franks, seeing the failure of their plans and the 
triumph of the true faith over the unbelievers, thought it 
prudent to withdraw from danger and save themselves 
alive ; so they departed, disappointed in their expecta- 
tions and full of regret for having incurred so much useless 
expense. Our people set fire to their mangonels, plundered 
all their warlike stores, and inflicted great loss of men upon 
them. Thanks to the goodness of God and to His assist- 
ance, the city was saved, the sword of their violence 
was shattered, and the Sultan's authority was firmly re- 



He then went to meet his father, that his happiness might 
be complete in the pleasure of seeing him, and wishing 
in this to imitate his namesake, the prophet Joseph. It 
was in the course of the month of Jornada II., in the year 
565 (February-March, A.D. 11 70), that his father, Nejm 


ed-Din Ayub,^ came to join him. Urged by the respect 
he had always felt for his father, he offered to yield up 
to him all the power he had acquired ; but Ayub replied : 
' My dear son, remember that God would not have chosen 
thee to occupy this position had He not judged thee 
capable of filling it. When good fortune is sent us, we 
must not alter its destination.' Then the Sultan bestowed 
upon him the management of all the treasure of the realm. 
Salah ed-Din continued to exercise absolute authority as 
vizier until the death of el-'Adid Abu Muhammad 'Abd- 
Allah,2 the last of the Egyptian khalifs. 

In the. month of Moharrem 566 (September-October, 
A.D., 1 170) Nur ed-Din took the city of Er-Rakka,^ and 
afterwards, towards the end of the same month, he captured 
Nisibin.^ He took Sinjar^ in the month of Rabi'a H. 

^ Abu esh-Shukr Ayub el-Melek el-Afdal Nejm ed-Din was the son 
of Shadi, the Governor of Tekrit^ on the Tigris. He succeeded his 
father as governor, but afterwards took service with Zenghi, Lord of 
Mosul, who made him Governor of Baalbek, where he founded a con- 
vent of Siifis. He was next Governor of Damascus for Nur ed-Din, 
and defended it against the Franks in 1148. He finally died at Cairo 
from a fall from his horse (1173). — W. 

2 Shortly before the death of el-'Adid, who was Fatimite (Shi'ite) 
Khalif from 1160 to 1171, Nur ed-Din, who was a Sunni Moslem, and 
attached to the interests of the 'Abbassides, instructed Salah ed-Din 
to restore the name of the 'Abbasside Khalif, el-Mostadi, in the Friday 
sermon {khoiba\ and depose the Shi'ite Khalif. — W. 

3 Rakka, on the left bank of the Euphrates, at the junction of the 
Belik with that river, is about eleven hours below Meskineh, the head 
of steam navigation. Rakka is on the site of Nicephorhnn^ and nearly 
opposite to it, on the right bank, was Thapsacus. Here Cyrus forded 
the Euphrates, and Alexander crossed the river in pursuit of Darius. — W. 

4 Nisibin^ ancient Nisibis^ is near the point where the JaghjaghaSu 
{Mygdomus) leaves the mountains. It was a famous town and fortress, 
and was at one period (B.C. 149 — a.d. 14), the residence of the Armenian 
kings. Trajan derived his title * Parthicus ' from its capture.— W. 

5 Smjar {Singara) on the Nahr T/iathar, which rises in Jebel 
Sinjar, is on the road from Deir to Mosul, and about 63 miles west 


(December, 1 170; January, 1 171), and then marched towards 
Mosul, with no hostile intention, however. Having crossed 
the river (the Tigris) with his troops at the ford of Beled, 
he encamped upon the Tell facing Mosul, which is called 
the Castle^ (El-Hisn). Then he sent a message to his 
nephew, Seif ed-Din Ghazi,- prince of that city, informing 
him of his friendly intentions. He concluded a treaty of 
peace with him, and on the 13th of the month of Jomada I. 
(January 22, A.D. 1171), made his entry into Mosul, 
confirmed his nephew in the government of that city, 
and gave him his daughter in marriage. To his other 
nephew, Tmad ed-Din,^ he gave the city of Sinjar. Then, 
leaving Mosul, he set out on his return to Syria, and 
entered Aleppo in the month of Sh'aban (April-May) 
of the same year. 



El-'Adid died on Monday, the loth of Moharrem, 567 
(September 13, A.D. 1171). A short time before his death, 
Salah ed-Din, whose authority was by this time firmly 
established, had ordered the khotba to be read in the name 

of the latter place. It was a strong border fortress of the Romans, 
and beneath its walls was fought a memorable battle between Con- 
stantius and Sapor. It was stormed by the Persians during the reign 
of Julian.— W. 

^ lL\\^\-^Qm\^oi Kuyutijik {Nineveh). 

2 Seif ed-Din Ghazi succeeded his father, Kotb ed-Din, as Lord of 
Mosul in 1 170. He submitted to his uncle, Nur ed-Din, and was 
confirmed in his government. He took the side of his cousin, es- 
Saleh, Lord of Aleppo, and was defeated by Salah ed-Din. He died 
in ii8o(Ibn Khallikan).— W. 

3 See pp. 28, 71. 


of the Abbaside Khalif, el-Mostadi/ and nothing occurred 
to disturb the order that prevailed throughout the country. 
All the treasures of money in the palace he expended and 
disposed of as presents. On each occasion, when God 
opened unto him the treasure-house of any prince, he gave 
the contents up as spoil, keeping nothing for himself. 

He then commenced preparations for an expedition 
into the enemy's territory, organizing it with the greatest 
forethought. Nur ed-Din, for his part, had resolved to 
make war (on the Franks), and had invited his nephew, 
the Prince of Mosul, to give him his support. This prince 
arrived with his army, and served under his uncle. The 
expedition terminated in the capture of 'Arka,^ which took 
place in Moharrem, 567 (September-October, A.D. 1171). 




For a long while he had devoted all his strength to the 
promotion of justice, and to the scattering of benefits and 
boons upon the nation. In the year 568 (A.D. 1172-1173), 

' El-Mostadi was Khalif from 1 170 to 1180. The Khotba {KJmtba) 
is the sermon delivered on Fridays at the time of mid- day prayer. It 
must be in Arabic, and must include prayers for Muhammad, the 
Companions, the reigning Khalif, and the Sovereign. Hence the 
mention of a man's name in the khotba is a sign of his assumption of 
sovereignty. — W. 

2 'Arka was about 12 miles north of Tripoli, and some 6 miles from 
the coast. It commanded the great coast-road, which ran between it 
and the sea, and the road up the valley of the Eleutherus to Emesa 
{Horns). The site, on a rocky hill, still bears the name 'Arka. Its 
capture secured to the Moslems access to the coast, and facilitated 
operations against the Christians. — W. 


he marched at the head of his army upon el-Kerak and 
esh-Shobek, having made up his mind to begin with those 
places, because they were nearest to Egypt, and lay on 
the road to that country. They thus prevented travellers 
from resorting thither. No caravan could pass through 
that, district unless the Sultan marched out and escorted 
it in person. His object, therefore, was to make the 
road freer and more easy, to put the two countries^ into 
communication, so that travellers might come and go 
without hindrance. He set out to lay siege to these places 
in the year 568, and engaged in many skirmishes with 
the Franks. He returned to Egypt without having gained 
any advantage in this expedition. Nevertheless, a recom- 
pense for undertaking it remained to him in God's hands. 
Nur ed-Din took Mar'ash^ in the month of Zu el-K'ada of 
this year (June-July, A.D. 1173), and overthrew Behnesa^ 
the month following. 



On his return from this expedition, before he reached 
Misr, the Sukan received news that his father, Nejm ed- 
Din, was no more. He was sorely grieved not to have 
been with him in his last moments. Nejm ed-Din died 

^ Syria and Egypt. 

2 Mar ash, near the foot of the Taurus, N. of Aleppo. It was a place 
of great importance during the border warfare between the Arabs and 
the' Byzantines. 

3 Behnesd, or Behesnd {Besne), is about two days' journey N.E. of 
'A in tab, on the road from Mar' ash to Siimeisdt, on the Euphrates. 
The castle was regarded as impregnable until taken by Timur m 


from a fall from his horse ; he was very fond of galloping 
at full speed, and playing diraa} At such a rate did he 
go that those who saw him used to say : ' That man is 
sure to die from a fall from his horse.' He died at Misr 
in the year 568 (A.D. 1172-1173). 

In the year 569 (A.D. 1 173- 1 174) the Sultan saw the 
strength of his army, and the great number as well as 
the courage of his brethren. He also heard that a certain 
man named 'Abd en-Nebi Ibn Mehdi had made himself 
master of Yemen and of the strongholds of that country, 
and that he had the khotba'^ preached in his own name, 
declaring that his empire would stretch over all the earth, 
and that he was destined to obtain supreme power. The 
Sultan was counselled to send his eldest brother, Shems 
ed-Daula el-Melek el-Mu'azzem Turan Shah,^ against this 
man, a noble and lofty-minded prince, greatly distinguished 
by the fine qualities of his disposition. I have heard the 
Sultan praise his brother's noble disposition and fine 
qualities, * in which he excels me,' he used to say. Turan 
Shah set out for Yemen in the month of Rejeb, 569 
(February, A.D. 1 174), and it was at his hands that God 
granted us the conquest of that country. He killed the 
heretic {Khareji) who had established himself there, made 
himself master of the greater part of the country, and 
bestowed gifts and presents upon a great number of 

^ Dira!a is a second name {ox Jo id. The word means the cubit, 
fore-arm, and among some tribes the fore part of a spear between the 
point and the fist holding it. — W. 

2 See p. 62. 

3 Turan Shah, who was at one time Governor of Damascus, made 
an expedition against Nubia in 11 72-1 173. He died at Alexandria 
in 1180.— W. 




LiXE Asad ed-Din, Nur ed-Din^ died of an affection of the 
throat which his physicians were unable to cure. His death 
took place on Wednesday, the nth of Shawal, 569 (May 15, 
A.D. 1174), in the castle of Damascus. He was succeeded 
by his son, el-Melek es-Saleh Ism'ail.^ Salah ed-Din gave 
me the following account : ' We had received information 
that Nur ed-Din had declared his intention of coming to 
attack us in Egypt, and some of our council were of opinion 
that we ought to throw off the mask, declare ourselves in 
revolt, and openly break with him. They said : " We will 
take the field against his army in battle array, and will 
drive him back from hence, if what we hear he is planning 
ever comes to pass." I was the only one who opposed this 
idea, saying: "We must not even think of such things." 
The discussion continued among us until we received 
tidings of his death.' 


(A.D. 1 174-1175). 

This El-Kenz had been a general in the service of the 
Egyptian Government. He managed to escape, and estab- 

^ See p. 47. 

2 El-Melek es-Saleh'Imad ed-Din Ismail was only eleven years old 
when he succeeded his father. He died at Aleppo in 1181 when not 
quite nineteen, nominating his cousin, 'Izz ed-Din, son of Kotb ed-Din, 
as his successor. — W. 

3 According to some readings, el-Kend. 


lished himself at Aswan/ where he set to work to organize 
a conspiracy. He gathered together the negroes, and made 
them believe that he was going to make himself master of 
the country and reinstate the Egyptian Government. These 
people were possessed by the spirit of faction which charac- 
terizes all Egyptians, and which reduces acts such as this 
man contemplated to the merest trifles in their eyes. When 
he had assembled together a great number of people and a 
host of negroes, he marched towards Kus^ and the depen- 
dent districts round it. The Sultan, informed of his move- 
ments, sent against the insurgents a strong, well-armed 
force, selected from men who, having tasted the sweetness 
of Egypt, were afraid it might be taken from them. At 
their head he placed his brother, el-Melek el-'Adel Seif ed- 
Din, who marched out to meet the enemy, defeated them in 
a pitched battle, and killed a great number. Thus the evjl 
was rooted out and the revolt extinguished. This took 
place on the 7th of the month Safer, in the year 570 (Sep- 
tember 7, A.D. 1 174). By this means the foundations of 
the Sultan's authority were greatly strengthened and re- 
newed — may God be praised ! 



The Franks, hearing of the revolution in Egypt and of the 
change of government that had taken place, conceived the 

^ Assudn at the foot of the first cataract of the Nile. 

2 Kiis^ or Kos^ is on the right bank of the Nile, a little above Koptos, 
a town which it supplanted as the emporium of the Arabian trade. 
Kos itself afterwards gave place to Kctich^ as Myos-Hormos and 
Philoteras-portus, on the Red Sea, gave place to Kosseir. — W. 


hope of conquering the country, and despatched a fully- 
equipped army by sea. Their fleet was composed of galleys 
(sMni), of transports {taridd), of great ships {botsa})^ and 
other vessels, to the number of six hundred. On the 7th 
of the month Safer, of this year (September 7, 1174), they 
took up their position before this frontier city. The Sultan 
sent a body of troops to relieve the place, and was so 
active in his opposition that the enemy, paralysed by the 
terror which God had placed in their hearts, were unable 
to resist him ; they departed with disappointed hopes, and 
having wasted all the money they had expended. They 
had closely besieged the city, and assaulted it with all 
their forces for three days, but God protected it. When 
they perceived that the Sultan was marching against them, 
they hastily abandoned their mangonels and other engines ; 
then the people of the city lost no time in sallying out to 
take possession of these machines, and set them on fire. 
This was a momentous event, and one of the greatest 
mercies ever granted (by God) to the Moslems. 



At his death Nur ed-Din left a son, el-Melek es-Saleh 
Ism'ail, who at this time was at Damascus. The castle of 
Aleppo was occupied by Shems ed-Din 'Ali Ibn ed-Daya 

.1 The word botsa, in the plural botes, is used by some Arab historians 
to denote a ship of great size. El-Makrizi mentions a botsa which 
held 1,500 men. Quat.remere shows the meaning of this word, and 
of the words tarida and shcini very clearly in his extract from el- 
Makrizi's ' Soluk,' published under the title of ' Histoire des Sultans 



and by Shadhbakht^ 'Ali (Ibn ed-Daya), who for his part 
was laying ambitious plans. El-Melek es-Saleh, having 
left Damascus, set out for Aleppo, and arrived outside that 
city on the 2nd of Moharrem (August 3, A.D. 1174). He 
was accompanied by Sabek ed-Din.2 Bedr ed-Din sallied 
out from the town to receive him and arrested Sabek ed- 
Din.^ Having effected an entrance into the citadel, el- 
Melek es-Saleh arrested Shems ed-Din (Ibn ed-Daya), and 
Hasan, his brother, and committed them all three to 
prison. On this same day, Ibn el-Khashab Abu el-Fadl 
lost his life in a tumult that took place in the city of 
Aleppo. It is said that he was killed the day before the 
arrest of the two sons of ed-Daya, for it was they who 
committed this murder. 

The Sultan, having assured himself of the truth of the 
report of Nur ed-Din's death, and knowing that the 
son of that prince was a young man unequal to the 

^ When Nur ed-Din died, the emirs at Damascus appointed Gumish- 
tikin S'ad ed-Din, Emir of Mosul, the guardian of his young son, es- 
Saleh, and sent him and the prince to Aleppo. That town was then 
torn by factions, part of the people being Fatimite {Shi'ite) and part 
Abbaside {Sun?ti). Shems ed-Din, who had been one of Nur ed- 
Dins principal emirs, was governor, but his authority was confined 
to the citadel, where he lived with his brother, Jemal ed-Din Shadh- 
bakht. The city was held by another brother, Bedr ed-Din Ibn ed- 
Daya. The emirs were jealous of each other, and continually plotting 
to get the sole government of the city, and to become guardian of the 
young prince. In one of the tumults, Abu el-Fadl Ibn el-Khashab, 
who was Kadi and head of the Shi'ite party, was killed. When 
Gumishtikin arrived with es-Saleh, he imprisoned the brothers ed- 
Daya, and restored order. The ed-Dayas were natives of India, and 
freed men of Nur ed-Din (*Zobda el-Haleb,' a history of Aleppo, by 
Kemal ed-Din).— W. 

2 This is a mistake. The author should have written S'ad ed-Din, 
the title given to Emir Gumishtikin. 

3 This is another mistake. Emir Bedr ed-Din sallied out from the 
town to meet S'ad ed-Din, and was arrested by him (Kemal ed-Din's 


cares and responsibilities of sovereignty, and to the task 
of driving the enemies of God from the land, made pre- 
parations for an expedition to Syria, the root (or base) of 
all the lands of Islam. He set out with a strong body of 
troops, after leaving a sufficient force in Egypt to protect 
that country, maintain order, and uphold the authority of 
the government, and he was accompanied by many of his 
kinsmen and retainers. As he had sent letters to the 
emirs and people of Syria, the supporters of el-Melek 
es-Sdleh were divided and had no settled plans. Each 
man distrusted his neighbour, and some were arrested by 
their colleagues. This inspired great terror among the 
others, and estranged the hearts of his people from the 
young prince. The state of affairs forced Shems ed-Din 
Ibn el-Mokaddem^ to write to the Sultan, who hastened 
his march, with a view of demanding that el-Melek es-Saleh 
should be given up to him. He would then take upon 
himself the education of that prince, the administration of 
government, and the re-establishment of order. There 
was no resistance on his arrival at Damascus, and the city 
was delivered up to him on Tuesday, the 30th of the 
month Rabi'a H., in the year 570 (November 27, A.D. 1174). 
He also obtained possession of the castle. The first house 
he entered was that which had belonged to his father. 
The people of the city assembled to see him and to receive 
him with expressions of joy. He distributed large sums 
of money that day, and showed the people of Damascus 
that he was as pleased to see them as they were to have 
him in their city. He then took up his quarters in the 

^ Shems ed-Din Ibn el-Mokaddem, who had been appointed 
guardian of es-Saleh, became alarmed at the ambitious schemes of 
Gumishtikin at Aleppo, and sided with Salah ed-Din, to whom he 
surrendered Damascus, He was killed at Mount 'Arafat in a scuffle 
that arose out of a dispute about precedence with the chief of the 
pilgrim caravan from Irak. — W. 


castle and thus established his authority in the city. He 
set out shortly afterwards for Aleppo. On reaching 
Emesa, he took up a position against that city, and 
captured it in the month Jornada I. (December), in the 
year 570. Without pausing to besiege the castle of that 
place he pushed on, and on Friday, the 30th of the same 
month, halted for the first time at Aleppo. 



Seif ed-Din, Prince of Mosul, learning what had taken 
place, saw that a man had appeared who was to be feared, 
and was mighty and full of mastery. Fearing that, if the 
Sultan met with no opposition, he would over-run the 
country, establish his authority over it, and obtain supreme 
power, he equipped a great number of men, and entrusted the 
command of this powerful army to his brother, Tzz ed-Din 
Mas'ud. The troops set out to oppose the Sultan with a 
view of giving him battle, and driving him out of the land. 
Salah ed-Din, informed of their plans, left Aleppo on the 
1st of Rejeb of this year (January 26, A.D. 1175), and 
retreated in the direction of Hamah. On reaching Emesa, 
he laid siege to the castle, and captured it. Tzz ed-Din 
came to Aleppo, and, after joining the garrison of that 
city to his own army, renewed his march at the head of 

^ Abu el-Fath Abu el-Muzaffer 'Izz ed-Din, in the lifetime of his 
brother, commanded the troops, and was defeated by Salah ed-Din 
in 1 175. His cousin, es-Saleh, made him his heir, and he reached 
Aleppo in December, 1 181. A few months later he exchanged Aleppo 
with his brother, 'Imad ed- Din, for Sinjar, etc. He succeeded Seif 
ed-Din as Lord of Mosul in 1180, and died in 1193. — ^- 


an immense multitude. The Sultan, knowing that these 
troops were on the march, set out to meet them, and fell 
in with them at the Horns of Hamahy He wished, if 
possible, to persuade their leaders to make peace, and 
entered into correspondence with them ; but in this he was 
unsuccessful. They preferred to risk a battle in the hope 
of attaining their chief object, and the fulfilment of their 
wishes. But the decision (of God) is other than the will 
(of man) ; the battle took place, and God granted that the 
troops (of Mosul) were utterly routed. Many of them were 
taken prisoners, but the Sultan afterwards gave them their 
liberty. This took place on the 19th of Ramadan, 570 
(April 13, A.D. 1 175). After this victory, the Sultan en- 
camped before Aleppo for the second time, and its in- 
habitants were obliged to cede him el-M'aarra^ and Kefr 
Tab^ as the price of peace. He also took (the fortress of) 
Barin* towards the end of the year. 



The day on which this battle was fought, Seif ed-Din was 
besieging his brother, Tmad ed-Din,^ in Sinjar. He was 

^ Heights near the gorge of the Orontes at Hamath in N. Syria. 

2 El-M'aarra en-Nu'indn^ so called from one of the companions of 
the Prophet who died there, is about eight hours from Hmnah on the 
road from that place to Aleppo. It was first taken by the Crusaders 
in November, 1098, and plundered and destroyed by Bohemund in 
1099. The village is still noted for its pistachios, olives, etc. — W. 

3 Kefr Tab was a small town between M'aarra and Aleppo. 

4 Bdrtn was a small town about one day's march S. of Hamah, 
and near er-Rafaniya {Raphanea). It had a castle, built by the 
Crusaders about 1090. — W. 

5 See pp. 28, 81. 


determined to wrest the city from him, and oblige him to 
renew his allegiance ; for this prince maintained friendly 
relations with the Sultan, and thought that would suffice 
to protect him. Seif ed-Din beset the place very closely, 
brought mangonels to play upon it, and made a great 
breach in the walls. He was on the point of taking it, 
when he heard the result of the battle. Fearing that his 
brother would hear of this event, and be encouraged to 
continue his resistance, he made proposals for peace, which 
vvere accepted. Immediately after this, he set out for 
Nisiba, where he exerted himself to assemble his troops, 
and pay them. He then marched towards the Euphrates, 
which he crossed near el-Bira.^ Having encamped on the 
Syrian bank, he sent messengers to Gumishtikin and el- 
Melek es-Saleh, proposing the terms of a treaty on which 
he could join them. Gumishtikin came to his camp, and 
entered into negotiations which were interrupted and 
renewed so many times that Seif ed-Din was often on the 
point of returning home. At last it was agreed that he 
should have an interview with el-Melek es-Saleh, and he 
set out for Aleppo. When he approached the city, the 
young prince went out in person to welcome him, and the 
meeting took place near the fortress. Seif ed-Din embraced 
him, took him in his arms, and wept. Then he sent him 
back to the fortress, and encamped close to the spring 
called el-Mobaraka (* blessed '), where he remained for 
some time, and where the Aleppo garrison came every day 
to pay him respect. He visited the fortress, attended by 
a company of his horsemen, and took a meal there (///., 

eat bread there). After this he struck his camp, and 

^ El-Btra^ in modem Arabic, Bir; in Turkish, Birejik {Apamea 
zeugma)^ at one of the most important crossings of the Euphrates 
N.E. of Aleppo. 


repaired to Tell es-Sultan,^ accompanied by the troops 
from Diarbekr, and a great number of people. 

Whilst the Sultan was awaiting the arrival of the troops 
he had summoned from Egypt, the others (the supporters 
of el-Melek es-Saleh) made no good use of their time 
either in action or in making arrangements, little suspect- 
ing that their negligence would be fatal. The army having 
arrived from Egypt, the Sultan resumed his march, and 
reached the Horns of Hamah. The others, when they 
heard that the troops had come, sent out their spies and 
secret emissaries, through whom they learnt that the Sultan 
had pushed forward with a small escort to the Turkoman's 
Well, and that the rest of the army was dispersed in different 
directions to water the horses. Had it been God's will to 
give them the victory, they would have marched upon the 
Sultan that very moment ; * dut if God decrees, it was to 
be' (Kuran viii. 43). Therefore they gave the Sultan and 
his troops time to water their horses, to concentrate, and 
prepare for battle, and on the following morning they 
took up their position to fight. It was on the morning of 
Thursday, the loth of Shawal, 571 (April 22, A.D. 1176), 
that the two armies encountered one another. Then 
followed a fierce conflict, in which the right wing of Seif 
ed-Din's army, commanded by Muzaffer ed-Din^ (Kukburij, 

' About a day's march from Aleppo, on the road to Hamah. 

2 Abu Said Kukburi el-Melek el-Mu'azzam Mozaffer ed-Din suc- 
ceeded his father as Lord of Arbela in 1168. He was then only four- 
teen, and was imprisoned by his Atabeg, Mujahid ed-Din Kaimaz, 
who placed his younger brother, Zein ed-Din, on the throne. Kukburi, 
after visiting Baghdad, entered the service of Seif ed-Din, who gave 
him Harran as a fief He afterwards took service with Salah ed-Din, 
who gave him Edessa and Sumeisat^and whose sister he married. 
He fought in most of Salah ed-Din's' battles, and displayed great 
bravery, especially at Hattin. On the death of his brother, 1190, he 
succeeded him at Arbela, and was noted for his charitable works. 


son of Zein ed-Din, overthrew the Sultan's left flank. 
Salah ed-Din then charged in person, put the enemy to 
flight, and made prisoners a great number of their chief 
officers, and Fakhr ed-Din 'Abd el-Mesih (the vizier). He 
restored the important persons to liberty. Seif ed-Din 
returned to Aleppo, took the money which he had left 
there, and crossed the Euphrates on his return to his 
own country. The Sultan refrained from pursuing those 
who had escaped. He spent the rest of the day in the 
enemy's camp, where he found all their baggage just as 
they had left it ; their cooking utensils, their provisions, 
their stables full of horses — all had been left. He dis- 
tributed the horses and provisions amongst his officers and 
men, and gave Seif ed-Din's tent to 'Izz ed-Din Ferrukh- 
Shah, nephew of that prince. Then, having sat down 
before Membej,^ he received the capitulation of that place 
towards the end of the same month ; after that he marched 
upon the Castle of 'Azaz,'^ and laid siege to it on the 4th 
of the month of Zu el-K'ada, 571 (May 15, A.D. 11 76). 
It was here that the Ism'ailiya^ tried to assassinate him ; 
but God preserved him from their treachery, and gave the 
assassins into his power. This occurrence did not daunt 
his determination ; he remained before the place until he 
took it on the 14th of Zu el-Hijja (June 24). He arrived 

He brought water by an aqueduct to Jebel 'Arafat, and built fountains 
there for the Mecca pilgrims (Ibn Khallikan, ii. 535). — W. 
^ Membej (Bambyce), between Aleppo and Bir. 

2 ^Azdz is to the N.W. of Aleppo, near the road to Killis, in a 
fertile district. 

3 The Ism'ailiya or Assassins {Hashshdshin^ ' hemp-smokers ')> 
organized by Hasan el-Homeiri in 1090 at Alamut in Irak, had 
established themselves in the N. Lebanon by the middle of the twelfth 
century. The lower initiates were bound to carry out the Sheikh's 
orders against Moslem or Christian alike. The mystical teaching of 
the sect, tracing back to Ism'ail, the sixth Imim, had reached Syria as 
early as the ninth century. 


before Aleppo on the i6th of the same month, and, having 
encamped there for some time, took his final departure. 
One of the daughters of Nur ed-Din, quite a young girl, 
was sent to him by the Government of Aleppo to ask for 
the Castle of 'Azaz as a gift at his hands ; this request he 
granted. Towards the close of the same month, his brother, 
Shems ed-Daula^ (Turan Shah), arrived at Damascus on 
his return from Yemen. He remained there some time, 
and then returned to Egypt. He died at Alexandria on 
the 1st of Safer, 576 (June 27, 1180 A.D.). The Sultan also 
returned to Egypt to ascertain the condition of the country, 
and support those whom he had left in authority. It was 
in the month of Rabi'a I., 572 (September to October, 
A.D. 1 176), that he set out for Egypt, leaving his brother, 
Shems ed-Daula, as his lieutenant in Damascus. Having 
spent some time in Egypt, restoring order in the administra- 
tion of affairs, remedying defects in the government, and 
recruiting his army, he began his preparations for an 
invasion of the territories of the Franks, determined to 
penetrate to the sea-coast. He came into collision with 
the Franks at Ramla, whither they had advanced to meet 
him, early in the month of Jomada I., 573 (the end of 
October, A.D. 1177). 



Prince ArnAt (Renaud de Chatillon), the leader of the 
Franks, had been ransomed at Aleppo, where he had been 
detained a prisoner since the time of Nur ed-Din. This 
day (i.e., that of Ramla) the Moslems sustained a severe 
defeat. This is the explanation the Sultan gave of the 

^ See p. 64. ' 


cause of the disaster. Our troops had been drawn up in 
order of battle, and the enemy was advancing, when some of 
our people thought we ought to change the position of our 
flanks,^ so as to gain the protection of a well-known Tell in 
the country of Ramla,^ in our rear. Whilst our men were 
executing this movement, the Franks charged, and, by 
God's permission, put them to rout. As there was no 
stronghold at hand to which they could retreat, the 
Moslems fled in the direction of Egypt, and, losing their 
way, were scattered far and wide. The enemy took a 
great number of prisoners, amongst whom was 'Aisa,^ the 
jurist. This was a great reverse, but God repaired our 
loss by the advantage we gained in the famous battle of 

Let us turn to el-Melek es-Saleh. This prince's affairs 
having fallen into disorder, he had Gumishtikin, who 
was really governor of the whole country, arrested, and 
commanded him to give up the castle of Harim> On his 
refusal to do so, he put him to death. The Franks, hear- 
ing that the minister was dead, laid siege to Harim, in the 
hope of taking it. This took place in the month of 
Jomada II., in the year 573 (November - December, 
1 177 A.D.). The garrison, attacked on one hand by the 
Franks, and threatened on the other by el-Melek es-Saleh's 

^ The original is not clear. According to one translation, it means 
that the right and left wings should interchange their positions. — W. 

2 This defeat of Salah ed-Din occurred at Gezer {Tell Jezer)^ 5 miles 
S.E. of Ramleh, on November 25, 1 177. See Rohricht's ' Regesta Regni 
Hierosolymitani,' No. 264. 

3 It was through the exertions of this man, who was both lawyer 
and warrior, that Salah ed-Din was able to rally round him the emirs 
of Nur ed-Din's army, when the Fatimite Khalif appointed him his 
first minister, and honoured him with the title of Sultan. 

4 Hdrirn was an important border castle (called Harenc by the 
Franks) E. of the Orontes, and E. of Antioch. Near it Nur ed-Din 
defeated the Franks in 1163. 


army, surrendered the place to es-Saleh during the last 
ten days of the month of Ramadan (the middle of March, 
1 178 A.D.). Upon this the Franks withdrew into their 
own territories, and es-Saleh returned to Aleppo. Dis- 
sension still reigned ail round him, for several of his nobles 
had shown a leaning towards the Sultan. On the loth of 
Moharrem, 576 (June 6, A.D. 11 80), he sent a body of 
troops against 'Izz ed-Din Kilij,^ who had revolted at 
Tell-Khalid,2 After this he received tidings of the death 
of his cousin, Seif ed-Din Ghazi, Prince of Mosul, who died 
on the 3rd of Safer (June 29) this year. On the 5th of the 
same month 'Izz ed-Din Mas'ud succeeded his brother Seif 
ed-Din upon the throne. Shems ed-Daula (Turin Shah, 
brother of Salah ed-Din) died the same year at Alex- 



On his return to Egypt after his defeat, Salah ed-Din re- 
mained there whilst he remodelled his army ; then, hearing 
of the grievous condition of Syria, he made up his mind to 
return thither to give battle to the infidels. At this time 
an ambassador came from Kilij Arslan^ (Prince of Iconium) 
to negotiate a treaty of peace and alliance with him, and 
to complain of the Armenians. He at once determined 

1 'Izz ed-Din Kilij had been one of Nur ed-Din's emirs. He held 
in fee the fortress and lands of Te/l Khalid, in the province of Aleppo. 

2 Tell Khdlid ^SiS a castle about twelve miles N.W. of Meinbej^ 

3 Izz ed-Din Kilij Arslan II., the Seljuk Sultan of Rum, whose 
capital was at Iconium {Konid), 'Izz ed-Din added largely to the 
Seljuk Empire of Rum, but in 1188 divided it between his ten sons, 
and abdicated. — W. 


to invade the country of Ibn Laon/ and support Kilij 
Arslan. When he came to Kara-hissar,- he encamped 
there and effected a junction with the troops from Aleppo, 
who had been sent to put themselves under his orders. 
Indeed, one of the conditions of the treaty of peace con- 
cluded with Aleppo was that he should be furnished with 
troops whenever he required them for any expedition. 
This contingent joined him on the banks of the Nahr el- 
Azrak^ (the blue river), which flows between Behnesa and 
Hisn Mansur.^ Having crossed this river, he advanced to 
Nahr el-Aswad^ (the black river), which forms the 
boundary of the territories of Ibn Ladn, where he cap- 
tured the fortress^ . . . from (the Armenians), and razed it 
to the ground. After this the enemy surrendered a 
number of prisoners to him as the price of peace, upon 
which the Sultan decided to withdraw. Kilij Arslan pro- 

^ Ibn Laon was Rhupen 11. (1174-1185), the grandson of Levon I. 
(Leo), the 'Thakavor' or Baron of Lesser Armenia. He waged war 
successfully against Byzantines, Seljuks, and Arabs, and largely ex- 
tended the kingdom. He was treacherously captured by Bohemund, 
of Antioch, and abdicated in favour of his brother, Leo H., 'the 
great.'— W. 

2 Kara-hissdr is the name of a large meadow {merj) or plain to the 
N. of Aleppo. — W. 

3 The Nahr el-Azrak is the present Geuk Su, which falls into the 
Euphrates below Sumeisdt. 

4 Hisn Manstir is possibly the modem Adiaman^ the chief town 
of the Hisn Mansur Kaza. 

5 The Nahr el-Aswad is the Kara Su, which flows between the 
Giaour Dagh and the Kurt Dagh to the Lake of Antioch. 

6 The name of the fortress is omitted in the original, and the Arabic 
sentence is left incomplete. The course of this campaign cannot 
be qlearly followed. It is difficult to understand why Salah ed-Din 
should have passed Aleppo, and gone so far north as the Geuk 
Su before being joined by the .A.leppo contingent. The fortress 
he took was apparently near the Kara Su, and perhaps near the 
Baghche Pass. — W. 


posed that he should grant peace to all the Orientals.^ 
Salah ed-Din consented to this, and on the lOth of the 
month Jornada I., in the year 576 (October 2, A.D. 1180), 
he swore to observe the terms of this treaty, in which 
Kilij Arslan was included, as well as the inhabitants of 
Mosul and Diarbekr. This compact was signed on the 
banks of the Senja,^ a tributary of the Euphrates. The 
Sultan then returned to Damascus, and thence into Egypt. 




In the year 577(1181-1182 A.D.) el-Melek es-Saleh suffered 
from a sharp attack of colic. He fell ill on the 9th of 
Rejeb (November 18, A.D. 1 181), and on the 13th of the 
same month his condition became so serious that the gates 
of the fortress were closed. He then summoned his chief 
emirs, one by one, and made them swear to receive 'Izz 
ed-Din, Prince of Mosul, as their lord. On the 25th of the 
same month (December) he breathed his last. His death 
created a profound impression on the minds of his sub- 
jects. Directly he was dead a messenger was despatched 
post-haste to carry the tidings to Tzz ed-Din Mas'ud, son 
of Kotb ed-Din,^ and to inform him that the deceased 
Prince had bequeathed the principality to him, making all 

^ Under the name Orientals^ Kilij Arslan ^included the Princes of 
Mosul, of the Provinces of Mesopotamia, and of Diarbekr. 

.2 It has been supposed that the Senja was the same as the Nahr 
el-Azrak or Geick Su, but it is probably the river Sajttr, which falls 
into the Euphrates below Jerdblus. — W. 

3 See p. 70. 


the people swear to receive him as their lord. 'Izz 
ed-Din set forth at once and rode in haste, fearing lest 
the Sultan should occupy the city before him. The first of 
his emirs to enter Aleppo were Mozaffer ed-Din, son of 
Zein ed-Din,^ and the Lord of Saruj. With them came an 
officer to administer the oath of allegiance to all the emirs 
in the city. They arrived on the 3rd of Sh'aban (Decem- 
ber 12, A.D. 1 181). On the loth of the same month Tzz 
ed-Din entered Aleppo, went up into the fortress, and took 
possession of the treasures and stores which had been 
lodged there. On the 5th of Shawal (February 11, 
A.D. 1 181), of the same year, he married the mother of 
el-Melek es-Saleh. 



Tzz ED-DIn remained in the fortress of Aleppo until the 
15th of Shawal, but he recognised that it would be im- 
possible for him to keep both Mosul and Syria. He was 
afraid of the Sultan, and overwhelmed by the extravagant 
demands of the emirs, who persisted in asking for in- 
creased allowances, which his limited means prevented 
him from granting. Mojahed ed-Din K^imaz^ also, his 

' See p. 73. 

2 Abu Mansur Kaimaz Mojahed ed-Din was a eunuch, and en- 
franchised slave of Zein ed-Din All, Lord of Arbela (p. 52). In 1164 
he was entrusted with the 'management of affairs at Arbela. In 1175 
he removed to Mosul, and became vizier to Self ed-Din Ghazi, and 
afterwards to his brother, 'Izz ed-Din. He was noted for the excel- 
lence of his administration, and for his justice. He died in 1199 (Ibn 
Khallikan, ii. 510). — W. 


chief minister, was in a very uncomfortable position, for he 
was not accustomed to the unseemly ways of the Syrian 
emirs. Therefore 'Izz ed-Din left the castle of Aleppo, 
and repaired to er-Rakka, leaving his son and Mozafifer 
ed-Din (Kukburi) behind. On his arrival at er-Rakka he 
met his brother ^Imad ed-Din, as had been arranged. 
They determined upon exchanging Aleppo for Sinjar, and 
Tzz ed-Din ratified this arrangement with his oath. This 
came to pass upon the 13th of Shawal (February 27, 
1 182). One agent was sent to Aleppo to take possession 
of the city on behalf of 'Imad ed-Din, whilst another was 
despatched by Tzz ed-Din to receive the city of Sinjar. 
On the 13th of Moharrem, 578 (May 19, A.D. 1182), Tmad 
ed-Din made his entry into the fortress of Aleppo. 



After peace had been concluded, through the intervention 
of Kilij-Arslan, the Sultan set out once more for Egypt, 
leaving his nephew Tzz ed-Din Ferrukh Shah as Governor 
of Damascus. It was in Egypt that he received news of 
the death of el-Melek es-Saleh, and this decided him. to 
return to Syria, to protect that country against the 
attempts of the Franks. Very shortly afterwards he was 
informed of the death of Ferrukh Shah, which occurred in 
the month of Rejeb, 577 (November-December, 1181). 
This event confirmed him in his resolution to pass over 
into Syria. Having set out from Misr, he arrived at 
Damascus on the 17th of Safer (June 22, 1182), and at 
once commenced preparations for an expedition against 
the Franks. On his march from Egypt this time he had 
crossed through their territories, boldly and not peacefully. 



He marched at once upon Beirut and laid siege to that place, 
but without success, for the Franks collected their troops 
and forced him to retire. On his return to Damascus 
he learnt that an embassy from Mosul had reached the 
Franks, and was stirring them up to make war upon 
him. He concluded from this that the people of Mosul 
had broken their oaths, and he determined to visit that 
country, so as to unite all the forces of Islam in a common 
feeling of hostility against the enemies of God. He had 
commenced his preparations when 'Imad ed-Din heard 
of them, and sent to Mosul to warn the government, 
and to beg them to send troops as quickly as pos- 
sible. The Sultan set out on his march, and appeared 
before Aleppo on the i8th of the month Jornada I., 
where he remained for three days. On the 21st of the 
same month he resumed his march in the direction of the 
Euphrates. He had already made terms with Mozaffer ed- 
Din, who was at this time holding the city of Harran,^ and 
who was in fear of an attack from the government of 
Mosul. He was still more afraid of the designs of Mojahed 
ed-Din (Kaimaz), and he joined the Sultan, as a means of 
protection. He crossed the Euphrates, and urged the 
Sultan to invade the country (Upper Mesopotamia), repre- 
senting that the conquest of that district would be an easy 
matter. Salah ed-Din crossed the Euphrates and took the 
cities of er-Roha- (Edessa), er-Rakka, Nisiba, and Saruj. 

^ Narrdn, ' the city of Nahor,' is about 24 miles S.S.E. of Edessa, on 
the Beh'k, a tributary of the Euphrates, and in the N. of Mesopotamia. 

2 Er-Roha^ the Armenian name of Edessa, comes from Callit-rhoc^ 
one of the classical names of the town. It was further corrupted by 
the Turks to Urfa or Orfa, Edessa is built on two hills, between 
which flows a small stream, and there are still many remains of the 
old wall and castle. During the first Crusade the town was taken by 
Baldwin (1097), who called himself Count of Edessa. In 1144 it was 
captured from Jocelyn II. by the Atabeg Zenghi, Lord of Mosul. It 
was in the hands of his grandson, 'Izz ed-Din, when taken by Salah 
ed-Din.— W. 


He placed a commission {Shihnd) over the province of 
Khabur,^ and divided it into military fiefs. 



This time he arrived before Mosul on Thursday, the nth 
of Rejeb, 578 (November 10, 1182 A.D.). As I was then 
in this city, I had been sent a few days before to Baghdad 
to solicit the assistance of the Khalif I went down the 
Tigris so quickly that I reached Baghdad in the space of 
two days and two hours. All I could obtain from the 
government of Baghdad was that they would send a 
despatch to the Sheikh of Sheikhs (chief of the 'Ulema), 
who was then with the Sultan as an accredited ambassador 
from the Khalif. In this letter he was commanded to have 
an interview with the Sultan, and to endeavour to bring 
about an arrangement between him and the people of Mosul. 
The latter nad already sent an ambassador to ask help 
from Pehlevan (Prince of Azerbijan).^ The answer they 

^ The province of Khabtir included the district lying between the 
Euphrates and the river Khabiir, the Biblical Aram Naharaim, and 
the classical Osrhoene. It is a very fertile district, and supported 
many important towns, but is now abandoned to nomads. In the 
time of Salah ed-Din it still retained much of its ancient fertility. — W. 

2 Shems ed-Din Pehlevan, Lord of Azerbijan, Arran, and Persian 
Irak, was the son of Shems ed-Din Ildukuz, the Atabeg to the Seljuk 
Sultan, Arslan Shah, who died in 1174. Pehlevan died in 11 86. 
Azerbijan is a province in N.VV. Persia, which corresponds to the 
ancient Atropateiie. It is separated from Russia by the Araxes, 
and its principal towns are Tabriz, Urmia, Khoi, Dilman, etc. It is 
one of the most fertile provinces of Persia, and is noted for its excellent 
fruit.— W. 



received from him contained conditions which would have 
been more oppressive than war with the Sultan. Salah ed- 
Din remained at Mosul for several days ; then he saw that 
no advantage could be gained by besieging so great a city 
in this manner, and that if he would take it, he must get 
possession of the castle and country around, and that he 
would be weakened by the long delay. He therefore 
struck his camp, and, on the i6th of Sh'aban (Decem- 
ber 15, 1 182), took up his position against Sinjar, which was 
occupied by Sheref ed-Din, son of Kotb ed-Din, with a 
certain number of men. He pressed this city so closely 
that, on the 2nd of the month Ramadan, he carried it by 
assault. Sheref ed-Din evacuated it unarmed, and he and 
his men were furnished with an escort to conduct them to 
Mosul. The Sultan gave Sinjar to his nephew, Taki ed- 
Din, and departed for Nisiba. 



The government of Mosul had summoned Shah Armen^ 
to their assistance, and thrown themselves into the arms of 
that prince ; he therefore resolved to set out from Khelat,'^ 

^ Shah Armen Nasr ed-Din Muhammad, who reigned fifty-seven 
years at Khelat (i 128 -i 185), was grandson of Sokman el - Kutbi. 
Sokman, who was an old slave of the Seljuk prince of Azerbijan, seized 
Khelat, Manazgerd, Arjish, and the districts round them, and pro- 
claimed himself king, with the Persian title, S/ta/t Armen^ ' King of 
the Armenians.' This title was borne by his successors. — W. 

2 Khelat^ now Akhldt, is near the north-west corner of Lake Van. 
There are several old mosques and richly-ornamented octagonal tombs, 
dating from the Seljuk period. It was at one time besieged by a 


to bring them relief. He pitched his camp at Harzem,^ 
and dispatched a messenger to 'Izz ed-Din, Prince of 
Mosul, to inform him of his arrival. The latter left the 
city on the 25th of Shawal, and set out to meet him. On 
his arrival he found the Lord of Mardin^ was with Shah- 
Armen. A body of troops belonging to the army 
quartered in Aleppo also came to join them. Their 
object in meeting was to march against the Sultan's forces. 
Shah-Armen sent Bektimor^ to Salah ed-Din to negotiate 
a treaty of peace, through the intervention of the Sheikh 
of Sheikhs, but this step was unproductive of any result. 
Then, when he heard the Sultan was advancing upon them, 
he retreated into his own country. Tzz ed-Din set out to 
return to his own dominions, and the coalition was dis- 
solved. Salah ed-Din then marched against Amid,* and 
captured that city after a siege of eight days. This took 
place during the first ten days of Moharrem, 579 (April- 
May, A.D. 1 183). He gave Amid to Nur ed-Din, son of 
Kara-Arslan, and to Ibn Nikan^ he granted all the money 

Byzantine force commanded by an adventurer, bearing the name of 
Russel BalioL— W. 

^ Ibn el-Athir mentions Harzeni several times in his ' Kamel ' as a 
place in the neighbourhood of Mardi?t, 

2 Mardin has always played an important part in the history of the 
district. It is built on the side of a conical hill, the houses rising tier 
above tier, and is extremely picturesque. The town lies on the direct 
road from Orfa to Mosul. The Lord of Mardin referred to was Kotb 
ed-Din el-Gh^zi, one of the Ortokid dynasty, who died in 1184.— W. 

3 Bektimor, who was a slave of the father of Sokman Shah-Armen, 
seized the throne on Sokman's death in 1185. — W. 

4 Amid {Amida) is the modern Diarbekr^ situated on the right bank 
of the Tigris. It is still an important town, and the capital of a vilayet. 
The town is surrounded by walls of basalt, and it has several old 
mosques and churches. — W. 

5 Ibn Nikan was chief minister of Nur ed-Din Mahmiid, son of 
Kara Arslan, Lord of Amid, and exercised absolute authority in the 
city. Salah ed-Din restored the city to the Ortokid prince. 


and portable property in the city. He then returned to 
Syria, directing his march on Aleppo. In the interval 
'Imad ed-Din had sallied out, and dismantled the fortresses 
of 'Azaz and Kefr Latha ;^ this last he had taken from the 
emir Bekmish, on the 22nd of the month Jomada I., when 
he had gone over to the Sultan. He also laid unsuccessful 
siege to the fortress of Tell Basher, which belonged to 
Dolderim el-Yaruki, who had ranged himself on the side 
of Salah ed-Din. Meanwhile, the Franks took advantage 
of the conflicts which had taken place between the (Moslem) 
troops to make inroads into the country, but God drove 
them out. 'Imad ed-Din, having repaired the fortress of 
el-Kerzein,2 returned to Aleppo. 



The Sultan returned to Syria and commenced operations 
by an attack on Tell Khaled, which he took by storm. This 
took place on the 22nd of Moharrem, 579 (May 17, A.D. 
1 183). He then marched upon Aleppo, and took up a 
position against it on the 26th of the same month. He 
first encamped on the Meidan el-Akhdar (* green plain '), 
and called in a number of troops from all parts, after which 
he employed all his forces in storming the city. 'Imad 
ed-Din, wearied beyond endurance by the insolent demands 
of his emirs, felt that he could not make a satisfactory 

^ ICe/r Ldtha was about a day's journey from Aleppo, in the district 
of Azaz. 

2 Ketzein lies near Rakka, about eight miles to the south of el-Bira 


resistance ; he therefore requested Hossam ed-Din^ to 
approach the Sultan in his behalf, and persuade Salah 
ed-Din to grant him the territory he had formerly held in 
exchange for the government of Aleppo. This arrange- 
ment was concluded quite unknown to the people or the 
garrison of the city. When matters had been settled in 
this wise, and the news was made public, the soldiers 
demanded an explanation of 'Imad ed-Din. He replied 
that it was true, and recommended them to make terms 
for themselves. They deputed 'Izz ed-Din Jurdik en-Niiri 
(one of Nur ed-Din's memluks) and Zein ed-Din^ to 
negotiate a treaty with the Sultan for themselves and the 
people of Aleppo. These ambassadors had an interview 
with the Sultan, which lasted until nightfall, and obtained 
terms for the garrison and inhabitants which Salah ed-Din 
swore to observe. This was on the 17th of Safer (June 1 1, 
A.D. 1 183). The garrison then came forth from the city 
to place themselves at the disposal of the Sultan, who 
remained in his camp in the Meidan el-Akhdar (* green 
plain '), and with them came the chief men of the city. 
The Sultan clothed them with robes of honour, and set all 
minds at rest. Tmad ed-Din remained in the fortress to 
settle his affairs, and to pack up his treasure and other 
property. Meanwhile, the Sultan dwelt in his camp in the 
Meidan el-Akhdar; and there, on the 23rd of Safer, his 
brother Taj el-Moluk died from a wound he had received. 
The Sultan was sorely afflicted by this loss, and sat in his 
tent that day to receive the public condolences of his 
officers. Tmad ed-Din also came the same day, to partici- 
pate in the Sultan's grief, and to wait on him. The Sultan 
settled various matt6rs with him, lodged him in his own 

^ Hossam ed-Din was governor of the fortress of Aleppo. 
2 In Kemal ed-Din's ' Zobda ' this man is called Balek. Zein ed- 
Din was his Arabic name. 


tent, and gave him (splendid) gifts and several fine horses ; 
he also clothed with robes of honour a great number of 
chiefs who came in the suite of his guest. 'I mad ed-Din 
set out the same day for Kara-hissar^ on his way to 
Sinjar. The Sultan was filled with joy at the success of 
his plans, and he went up to the castle, where Hossam 
ed-Din Doman set a magnificent banquet before him. 
This officer had remained to collect the various things 
which Tmad ed-Din had left behind. Soldiers were sent 
by the Sultan to take possession of Harim, and as the 
governor of that place made difficulties in order to create 
delay, the garrison sent to the Sultan and obtained a treaty 
ratified by his oath. Salah ed-Din then set out for Harim, 
and arrived there on the 29th of Safer. Having taken 
possession of the city, he remained there for two days to 
reorganize the government ; he appointed Ibrahim Ibn 
Sherwa governor, and then returned to Aleppo, arriving 
there on the 3rd of the month Rabi'a I. His troops were 
granted leave to return to their homes, whilst he remained 
at Aleppo to reorganize the government, and preside over 
the affairs of the city. 



The Sultan did not stay long in Aleppo. On the 22nd of 
the month Rabi'a II., in the year 579 (August 14, A.D. 1183), 
he set out for Damascus, preparatory to making an expedi- 
tion into the infidel's territories. He called his troops 
together, proceeding on his march whilst they followed 

' See p. 78. 


him. He did not halt at Hamah, but advanced by forced 
marches, taking no provisions with him, until the 3rd of 
the month Jornada I. (August 24), when he reached 
Damascus. Here he passed some days making prepara- 
tions, and on the 27th of the same month he pitched his 
camp by the Wooden Bridge, where he had ordered his 
troops to meet him. He halted here nine days, and then, 
on the 8th of Jomada H. (September 28), marched to el- 
Fawar,^ where he made his final arrangements before enter- 
ing the enemy's country. From this place he pushed on 
to el-Kuseir,2 where he spent the night. Quite early the 
next morning he reached the ford (over the Jordan), and, 
having crossed the river, marched as far as el-Beisan.^ 
Its inhabitants had abandoned their dwellings, leaving 
behind all the property they could not easily carry, and 
the fruits of their harvest. The soldiers were allowed to 
pillage the place, and they burnt everything they could 
not take with them. The Sultan continued his march to 
el-Jalut/ a prosperous village, near which there is a spring 
{'ain), and here he pitched his camp. He had sent for- 
ward a body of Nuri memluks (who had formerly belonged 
to Nur ed-Din), commanded by Tzz ed-Din Jurdik and 
Jaweli, a memluk (who had served) Asad ed-Din, to 
ascertain the whereabouts and movements of the Franks. 
These men fell in unexpectedly with contingents from el- 
Kerak and esh-Shobek, on their way to reinforce the 
enemy. Our people attacked them, killed a great number, 

^ El-Fawdr^ 'the bubbling spring.' Possibly the present village 
Fu'ara^ 12 miles E. of Jordan, at the head of Wad! Ekseir. 

- El'Kuseir, ' the little fort.' The name survives in Wddy Ekseir 
falling into the Jordan on the E., about 8 miles N. of Beisan. 

3 Beisan (Bethshean), 3 miles W. of the Jordan, near the mouth of 
the Valley of Jezreel. 

4 Now 'Ain JdlHd^ ' Goliath's Spring,' in the Valley of Jezreel, a 
mile S.E. of Jezreel. It has a large pool of water. 


and made more than a hundred prisoners ; then they 
returned, without having lost a single Moslem, except a 
man named Behram esh-Shawush. Towards the end of 
the day — the loth of Jornada II. (September 30, A.D. 
1 183) — the Sultan received news of the defeat of the 
Franks. His army showed their delight, and became 
firmly persuaded that they were destined to obtain victory 
and success. On Saturday, the nth of the same month, 
the Sultan was informed that the Franks had quitted 
Sefifuria, where they had mustered their forces, and were 
marching on el-Fula,^ a well-known village. As he meant 
to pit his forces against theirs in the field, he drew up his 
ranks in order of battle — right wing, left wing, and centre 
— and marched to meet them. The enemy advanced on 
the Moslems, and they came face to face (lit., eye to eye). 
The Sultan sent out the vanguard, composed of five 
hundred picked men, to attack them, and they made a 
great slaughter, and the enemy killed some. The Franks 
kept their ranks close, and their infantry protected their 
knights, and they neither charged nor stopped, but con- 
tinued their march to the spring we mentioned above, and 
there camped. The Sultan halted opposite to them, and 
endeavoured to provoke them to quit their position and do 
battle by sending out skirmishing parties. Nevertheless, 
they remained where they were, seeing that the Moslems 
were in great force. As the Sultan could not draw them 
from their position, he resolved to retire, hoping that they 
would pursue him, and give him an opportunity of fighting 
a pitched battle. He therefore marched in the direction 
of et-T6r (Mount Tabor) on the 17th of the same month, 

^ El-Fuleh^ ' the bean,' called La F6ve by the Franks, was a small 
fort 3I miles N. of Jezreel. The outposts of the Franks were at 
Tubania i^Ain TulraHn), a mile N.E. of 'Ain Jalud. and 5 miles S.E. 
of Fuleh. — ' William of Tyre,' xxii. 27. 


and took up a position at the foot of the mountain, 
watching for a favourable moment to attack them as 
soon as they began to move. The Franks started at 
dawn, and retreated. He pursued them, and tried in 
vain to provoke them to fight by a constant shower of 
arrows, and he continued to follow their march until they 
halted at el-Fula, going back to their own country. The 
Moslems, seeing this, came to the Sultan, and advised him 
to retire, because their supplies were running very short. 
Besides, he had inflicted severe loss upon the enemy, 
both in killed and in the prisoners he had taken ; and had 
destroyed several of their villages, such as 'Aferbela, the 
stronghold of Beisan^ and Zer'ain.^ He therefore retired, 
victorious and triumphant, and halted at el-Fawar, where 
he gave leave to such of his men as wished to return to 
their homes. He then marched back to Damascus, which 
he entered on Thursday, the 24th of the same month. The 
citizens testified the greatest delight at his return. What 
lofty ambition dwelt in his soul ! Even the capture and 
occupation of Aleppo did not deter him from undertaking 
another expedition ! His object in all his conquests was 
to enlarge his resources for carrying on the Holy War. 
May God grant him a splendid reward in the next life, 
even as, by His mercy, He allowed him to perform so 
many meritorious actions in this ! 



The Sultan remained at Damascus until the 3rd of 
Rejeb, 579 (October 22, AD. 1183), and went out several 

^ Zer'ain is Jezreel. 'Aferbela (Forbelet of the Franks) is un- 


times towards el-Kerak. He had summoned his brother, 
el Melek el-'Adel, who was at that time in Egypt, to join 
him at el-Kerak. As soon as he heard his brother had set 
out, he left (Damascus), and went to meet him, which he 
did quite close to el-Kerak. A great number of merchants 
and other people had travelled with el-'Adel, who arrived 
on the 4th of Sh'aban (November 22, a.d. 1183). The 
Franks had received information that el-Melek el-'Adel 
had taken the field, and they marched their men and 
knights towards el-Kerak to defend that place. When 
the Sultan heard that the army of the Franks was strong 
in number, he grew apprehensive of their marching in the 
direction of Egypt ; and therefore he sent his nephew, 
el Melek el-Mozafifer Taki ed-Din, into that country. This 
occurred on the 15th of Sh'aban. On the i6th of the 
same month the Franks encamped at el-Kerak, and the 
Sultan, after vigorously assaulting the place, was obliged 
to retire. It was here that Sheref ed-Din Barghosh (who 
had been one of Nur ed-Din's memliiks) testified (to the 
Faith) by death. 



After the arrival of the Franks at el-Kerak, the Sultan 
abandoned the hope of taking that stronghold, and retired 
towards Damascus with his brother, el-Melek el-'Adel. 
He arrived on the 24th of Sh'aban, and on the 2nd of 
Ramadan (December 19, 1183), he granted the Govern- 
ment of Aleppo to el-'Adel, who had remained with him. 
At that time his son, el-Melek ez-Zaher, was in Aleppo, 


with Seif ed-Din Yazk{ij, the regent, and Ibn el-^Amid.^ 
El-Melek ez-Zaher was his favourite son, on account of 
the fine character with which God had endowed him. 
Exalted ambition, clear judgment, lofty intelligence, an 
upright spirit and a virtuous life — all the gifts which lead 
to pre-eminence were united in his person, and he showed 
his father untiring affection and obedience. Nevertheless, 
his father took the Government of Aleppo out of his 
hands, because he believed certain advantages would accrue 
from such a measure. The prince quitted Aleppo with 
Yazkuj as soon as el-Melek el-'Adel arrived, and both went 
to attend the Sultan. On the 28th of Shawal (February 13, 
1184), they arrived at Damascus. Ez-Zaher remained 
with his father, and obeyed him and submitted unto him 
in all things. Nevertheless, he concealed in his heart a 
discontent that did not escape the Sultan's observation. 

This same month I came to the Sultan as a member 
of a deputation sent by the Government of Mosul. We 
had previously applied to Khalif en-Nasr ed-Din Illah, then 
at Baghdad, and had persuaded him to allow the Sheikh 
of Sheikhs, Bedr ed-Din, to accompany us, to act as 
ambassador and mediator. He was a most worthy man, 
highly respected not only at the Khalif 's court, but through- 
out the country. The Sultan held this doctor in such 
esteem that during his stay at the court he went to visit 
him almost every day. 

^ Ibn el-' Amid (Naseh ed-Din ed-Dimashki) was head of the 
executive government, both civil and military {dz'vdn), at Aleppo. 




The Sheikh had visited Mosul on his way, and from thence 
had travelled with the Kadi Mohi ed-Din, son of Kemal 
ed-Din, who had been a friend from the days of his boyhood. 
I, too, was a member of the deputation. We continued 
our journey, and on our arrival at Damascus the Sultan 
came out to meet us, to welcome the Sheikh and the 
others of us who were of his company. After the inter- 
view, which took place some distance from Damascus, 
we made our entry into the city on Saturday, the nth 
of Zu el-K'ada (February 25, 1184). The Sultan accorded 
us the most gracious and gratifying reception, and we 
spent several days in negotiations and attempts to make 
a final arrangement. But peace was not made on this 
occasion, and we departed to return to Mosul. The Sultan 
accompanied us as far as el-Kuseir,i where he bade the 
Sheikh farewell, and Bedr ed-Din that day made one last 
endeavour to effect a settlement. But his attempt failed 
in consequence of an objection raised by Mohi ed-Din. 
The Sultan stipulated that the Lord of Arbela and the 
Lord of el-Jezira^ should be free to choose his rule or that 
of Mosul, but the Kadi declared they must sign the treaty 
(of peace). This condition put a stop to the negotiations, 
and we started on our journey on the 7th of Zu el-Hijja 
(March 22). During our visit the Sultan commissioned 
the Sheikh to offer me all the posts which Beha ed- 

' El-Kuseir^ a. ruined village with a tower, nine miles N.E. of 
2 This is the city and principality oijczirat Ibn ^Omar. 


Dimashki^ had held in Misr. I refused his offer, fearing 
lest the ill-success of our negotiations should be attributed 
to me. From that time the Sultan had an opinion in his 
noble mind of myself of which I knew nothing until after 
I had entered his service. Salah ed-Din remained at 
Damascus, and continued to receive the ambassadors who 
were sent to him from all parts. One came from Sinjar 
Shah,2 Lord of el-Jezira, on whose behalf he swofe faith 
with the Sultan. The plenipotentiary of the Lord of 
Arbela did the same, and took his departure with the 
other ambassadors. On the 4th of Zu el-Hijja (March 19), 
el-Melek el-'Adel arrived from Aleppo to visit his brother 
the Sultan, and after being present at the Feast (of the 
Sacrifice),^ on the lOth of Zu el-Hijja, he returned once 
more to Aleppo. 



The Sultan had sent out messengers in all directions to 
collect troops. The first chief who came to join his stan- 
dard was Nur ed-Din, son of Kara Arslan, and Prince of 
Hisn Keifa. He arrived at Aleppo on the i8th of the 
month of Safer (May 31, 1184), and was received with the 
highest honours by el-Melek el-'Adel. This prince took 
him into the fortress, where he entertained him most agree- 

' El-Beha ed-Dimashki was principal professor in Menazel el-'Izz 
College, in Old Cairo, and held the office of Khdteb^ or chief preacher, 
in the same city. 

2 This was the Atabeg prince, Mo'ezz ed-Din, son of Seif ed-Din 
Ghizi, and Prince of Jezirat Ibn 'Omar. 

3 Zu el-Hijja is the month of the Hdj^ and the sacrifice is one of 
the ceremonies at Mecca. 


ably, and on the 26th of the same month set out with him 
for Damascus. The Sultan had been ill for several days, 
and God then restored him to health. As soon as he 
heard that the son of Kara Arslan was approaching, he 
hastened to meet him, for he was most generous in paying 
every honour to all men. They met in the Buk'aat 'Ain 
el-Jisr on the 9th of the month of Rabi'a I. (June 20, 1 184). 
He then returned to Damascus, in advance of the son of 
Kara Arslan and of ei-Melek el-''Adel, and set about 
making preparations for another expedition. On the 15th 
of that same month he left Damascus and took up his 
position at the Wooden Bridge.^ On the 24th el-'Adel 
arrived at Damascus with the son of Kara Arslan, and 
after sojourning there some days, set out with him to join 
the Sultan. The latter had just left Ras el-Ma^ on his 
way towards el-Kerak, and halted for several days close to 
that stronghold to await the arrival of el-Melek el-Moz- 
afifer^ from Egypt. This prince joined the Sultan on the 
19th of Rabi'a II. (July 30), and brought with him the 
household and treasures of el-Melek el-'Adel, all of which the 
Sultan despatched to that prince, and commanded him and 
the other leaders to join him forthwith at el-Kerak. All 
the detachments arrived in close succession, so that by the 
4th of Jomada I. (August 13) the fortress was completely 
invested. As soon as the contingents from Egypt, from 
Syria, and from el-Jezira — the latter commanded by the 
son of Kara Arslan — had effected a junction, the mangonels 
were set up to batter the place. When the Franks received 
news of what had taken place, they set out with their 

^ Probably the bridge of el-Kesweh, nine or ten miles S.W. of 

2 Ras el-Ma lies between es-Sanemein and Shemeskin, on the road 
from Damascus to Mecca. It is now called Kc/r el-Md. 

3 This was the title of Taki ed-Din 'Omar, Salah ed-Din's nephew. 


knights and footmen to the relief of el-Kerak. This for- 
tress was a source of great annoyance to the Moslems, for 
it so effectually commanded the road to Egypt that cara- 
vans could not travel without a strong military escort. 
The Sultan was resolved to put an end to this state of 
things and open the road to Egypt. When he heard that 
the Franks had come out, he prepared to meet them, 
ordering his men back to the heights of el-Kerak, and 
sending the baggage (away) into the country, that his 
troops should not be hampered in fighting. Then he 
marched against the enemy. As the Franks had halted 
at el-Waleh,^ he took up a position opposite to them, close 
to a village called Hesban, but afterwards marched on to a 
place called M'ain ; the Franks remained in their position 
at el-Waleh until the 26th of Jornada I. (September 4, 
1 184), when they moved their camp nearer to el-Kerak. 
A detachment of the Moslem army hung on their march, 
annoying their rear, till the end of that day. As soon 
as the Sultan saw that the Franks were bent on el-Kerak, 
he sent his army into the countries lying on the coast, 
which were left entirely unprotected in the absence of 
the troops. They carried Nablus by storm, and pillaged 
the city, but did not succeed in taking the castle. Then 
they captured Janin (Jenin), and returned to join the 
Suitan at Ras el-Ma with the prisoners they had taken, 
pillaging, burning, and sacking the country that they had 
passed through.^ Salah ed-Din entered Damascus in 
triumph on Saturday, the 7th of Jornada 11. (Septem- 

1 The Franks, sallying from Kerak, defended the pass of M^ddi 
Wdleh, about 20 miles N. of the castle. Salah ed-Din, at Hesbdn 
(Heshbon), was about 15 miles to the N.E., and at M'aht (Beth Meon) 
about 10 miles N. of this position. 

2 Salah ed-Din's army probably crossed the Jordan E. of Ndbhis 
(Shechem), and marching N. by Jenin {En Gannim) would recross 
S. of the Sea of Galilee near Beisdn. 



ber 15), supported on either side by el-Melek el-'Adel, and 
by Nur ed-Din, son of Kara Arslan. The latter he over- 
whelmed with honours and with tokens of his good-will 
and esteem. This month an ambassador arrived from the 
Khalif, bringing robes of honour for the Sultan, for his 
brother (el-Melek el-'Adel), and for the son of Asad ed-Din,^ 
and invested them therewith. On the 14th of the same 
month the Sultan clad the son of Kara Arslan in the robe 
he had received from the Khalif, and gave him leave to 
depart ; he also dismissed the troops. About the same 
time messengers came from Kukburi, son of Zein ed-Din, 
to ask the support of the Sultan. They brought news that 
the Mosul army, assisted by the troops of Kizil (Prince 
of Hamadan), under the command of Mojahed ed-Din 
Kaimaz, had threatened Arbela, and pillaged and burned 
in all directions. Kukburi had defeated them and put 
them to flight. 



On receiving this news the Sultan set out from Damascus 
for the country (of which Mosul is the capital), leaving 
orders for the army to follow him. He reached Harran, 
after a meeting with Mozaffer ed-Din (Kukburi) at el- 
Bira^ on the 12th of Moharrem, 581 (April 15, A.D. 1185). 
Seif ed-Din Ibn el-Meshtub, by the Sultan's command, led 
the vanguard of the army to Ras el-'Ain.^ On the 
22nd of Safer (May 25) the Sultan arrived at Harran, and 

^ Prince Muhammad, son of Asad ed-Din Shirkuh. 

2 See p. 72. 

3 /^ds el'Am, on the Khabur river, S.E. of Harran. 


on the 26th he had Mozaffer ed-Din (Kukburi), son of 
Zein ed-Din, arrested for something he had done and for 
certain words attributed to him by his ambassador, which 
angered the Sultan, though, indeed, he had not thoroughly 
investigated the matter.^ The Sultan deprived him of the 
governorship of the castles of Harran and Edessa, and 
kept him in prison to give him a lesson. Then, on the 
first day of the month of Rabi'a I. he clad him with a robe 
of honour, and received him once more into favour, restor- 
ing to him the castle of Harran and the provinces he had 
held, together with all the honours and dignities he had 
formerly enjoyed. Everything was restored to him ex- 
cepting the fortress of Edessa, and this place the Sultan 
promised should be given back to him later on. On 
the 2nd of the month Rabia' I. Salah ed-Din came to Ras 
el-'Ain, where he received an ambassador from Kilij 
Arslan, who brought tidings that the princes of the East 
had sworn together to march against him, if he did not 
withdraw from Mosul and Mardin, and to do battle with 
him should he persist in his designs. This information 
determined the Sultan to march towards Doneiser.^ On 
the 8th of the month Rabi'a I. he was joined by Tmad 
ed-Din, son of Kara Arslan, accompanied by the troops of 
Nur ed-Din, his brother, and the lord of Mardin. The 
Sultan went out to meet him and received him with great 
honours. On the nth of the same month he left Doneiser 
on his way to Mosul, and encamped in a place called el- 
Isma'iliyat, which was near enough to the city to enable 

1 According to Ibn el-Athir, in his ' Kamel,' Kukburi had offered 
the Sultan the sum of fifty thousand dinars as an inducement to under- 
take another expedition against Mosul. He did not fulfil his promise, 
and hence the Sultan's displeasure. 

2 Doneiser, according to the author of the ' Merased el-lttili,' lies at 
the foot of the hill upon which stands the city of Mardin. 



him to relieve the detachment engaged in the blockade on 
each succeeding day. 'Imad ed-Din, son of Kara Arslan, 
received news at this time of the death of his brother, Niir 
ed-Din, and obtained the Sultan's permission to depart, in 
the hope of securing the throne thus left vacant. 



Shah-Armen, Prince of Khelat, died in the month of 
Rabi'a II., in the year 581 (July, A.D. 1185) and was suc- 
ceeded by one of his memluks, named Bektimor, the same 
who had come on an embassy to the Sultan at Sinjar. 
His government was just, and conduced to the prosperity 
of the people of Khelat ; he followed the Sufi^ path, there- 
fore his subjects were submissive and devoted to him. 
The death of Shah-Armen and succession of Bektimor 
roused the ambition of the neighbouring kings, and in- 
duced Pehlevan Ibn Yeldokuz to march on Khelat. When 
Bektimor received news of his approach, he sent an 
ambassador to the Sultan, saying that he wished to 
surrender Khelat to Salah ed-Din, and to be received 
amongst the number of his servants, and that he would 
give his Majesty all he should ask. The Sultan thereupon 
felt so strong a wish to possess himself of Khelat that he 
raised the blockade of Mosul, and marched in the direction 
of that city. At the same time he despatched two envoys 
to Bektimor, viz., 'Aisa, the jurist, and Ghars ed-Din Kilij, 

^ The ' path ' is a Sufi term for the course of religious training lead- 
ing to renunciation of all worldly desires and to union with God. The 
SCft 'path' seems to have been borrowed from the teaching of 


to negotiate a treaty with him, the terms of which were 
to be committed to writing. These ambassadors fell in 
with Pehlevan a short distance from the city. Bektimor 
had frightened this prince by informing him that he 
thought of surrendering his territory to the Sultan, and 
Pehlevan had made terms with him, giving him one of his 
daughters in marriage, confirming him in his dominions, 
and restoring his country to him. Bektimor therefore 
made excuses to the Sultan's ambassadors, and they had 
to depart without effecting anything. The Sultan had 
already sat down before Miafarekin, besieging it, and 
fighting a great fight, and setting up his mangonels against 
it. There was a man in Miafarekin named Asad, who left 
nothing undone for the defence of the city ; but his en- 
deavours could not overcome destiny. The place sur- 
rendered to the Sultan on the 29th of Jomada I. Having 
now lost all hope of getting possession of Khelat, Salah 
ed-Din retired and took up a position before Mosul for the 
third time, encamping at Kefr Zemmar, not far from the 
city. The heat at that time was excessive. He occupied 
this camp for some time, and it was here that he received 
a visit from Sinjar Shah,^ from el-Jezira. He had an 
interview with this prince, and then sent him back to his 
own city. At Kefr Zemmar he was attacked by so serious 
an illness that it caused him great anxiety, and he set out 
for Harran. Although his condition was so serious, he 
would not allow himself to give way and travel in a litter. 
He reached Harran very sick, and so exhausted that his 
life was despaired of, and a report of his death was circu - 
lated abroad. At this juncture his brother arrived from 
Aleppo, bringing his own physicians with him. 

^ See above, p. 95. 




'Izz ED-DiN, the Atabeg Prince of Mosul, had sent me to 
the Khalif to entreat his assistance, but the mission was 
unsuccessful. He then applied to the Persians, but was 
unsuccessful in that quarter also. On my return from 
Baghdad, I informed him of the answer I had received, 
and he then abandoned all hope of obtaining help and 
assistance. When the news of the Sultan's illness was 
received in Mosul, we saw that it was an opportunity 
that ought not to be neglected, for we knew how readily 
that prince lent his ear to an appeal, and how tender- 
hearted he was; so I was commanded to go to him, 
accompanied by Beha ed-Din er-Rebib. To me was en- 
trusted the drawing-up of the oath to be sworn. ' Make 
every endeavour,' my instructions ran, ' to obtain favour- 
able conditions quickly.' It was during the first ten days 
of the month of Zu el-Hijja (the end of P'ebruary, ii 86), 
that we arrived in the Sultan's camp, and there we found 
that his life had been despaired of by all. We were 
welcomed with all honour, and the Sultan, for the first 
time since his convalescence, held a reception at which 
we were presented. On the day of 'Arafa (9th of Zu el- 
Hijja)^ we obtained for the government of Mosul all the 
district that lies between the two rivers, which he had 
taken from Sinjar Shah. He and his brother el-Melek el- 
'Adel swore the oath that I administered to them, which was 
couched in strong terms. The Sultan observed the condi- 

^ The day of ^ Arafa is that when the Mecca pilgrims visit Mount 


tions of this peace till the hour of his death — may God 
hallow his soul ! — and he never once broke them. When 
we came to him at Harran, he had already begun to grow 
stronger. At this place he received tidings of the death 
of (his cousin) son of Asad ed-Din (that is to say, of Mu- 
hammad, son of Asad ed-Din Shirkuh), prince of Emesa. 
He breathed his last on the day of 'Arafa (9th of Zu el- 
Hijja, March 3, A.D. 1186). El-Melek el-'Adel held a 
reception on this occasion to receive expressions of public 
condolence. At this period a conflict was being waged 
between the Turkomans and the Kurds, which resulted in 
great loss of life.^ During this month, also, we heard of 
the death of Pehlevan, son of Yeldokuz, who passed away 
on the last day of the month of Zu el-Hijja (February 23, 
1 186). 



When the Sultan found that his recovery was assured, 
he set out for Aleppo, which he reached on the 14th of 
Moharrem, 582 (April 6, 1 186). The delight of the people 
at seeing him again in their midst, and in good health, 
made it a memorable day. He remained there for four 
days, and then started for Damascus. At Tell es-Sultan^ 
he met Asad ed-Din Shirkuh, who had come out to 
meet him with his sister, and a numerous following. He 

^ This struggle was prolonged through several years, and Upper 
Mesopotamia, Diarbekr, Khelat, Syra, Azerbijan, and other countries, 
were deluged with blood. Mojahed ed-Din Kaimaz at last succeeded 
in bringing about a reconciliation between the two nations (Ibn el- 
Athir's ' Kamel,' under the year A.H. 581). 

2 Tell es- Sultan is about half-way between Aleppo and Hamah. 


brought with him a great number of presents (for the 
Sultan). That prince granted him the government of 
Emesa,^ and spent several days in that city to transfer the 
paternal heritage ; then he marched to Damascus, which 
he entered on *the 2nd oF Rabi'a I. (May 23). Never 
were such rejoicings seen as on that day. During this 
month numerous encounters took place between the 
Turkomans and the Kurds, in the district of Nisiba and 
elsewhere. A great number were killed on both sides. 
The Sultan, hearing that M'oin ed-Din had revolted at 
er-Rawendan,2 sent a written order to the army at Aleppo 
to besiege that place. On the 2nd of Jornada I. (July 21, 
1 186), M'oin ed-Din came from er-Rawendan to join the 
Sultan's train, after surrendering that place to 'Alem ed- 
Din Suleiman. On the 17th of the same month el-Melek 
el-Afdal arrived at Damascus. He had never visited Syria 
until that time. 



The Sultan deemed it necessary to send el-Melek el-*Adel 
into Egypt, because that prince was more familiar with 
the condition and circumstances of that country than was 
el-Melek el-Mozafifer (Taki ed-Din). He used to hold 
long conversations with him on this subject during his 
illness at Harran, which was a great pleasure to el-'Adel, 

^ The government of Emesa was entrusted to Muhammad, son of 
Shirkuh, and might naturally descend to Muhammad's son, 

« Er-Rawenddin (Ravendal of the Franks) was a fortress on the 
Nahr ^Afrin^ about two days' Journey N.W. of Aleppo. . 


who was deeply attached to Egypt. When the Sultanas 
health was re-established, and after his return to Damas- 
cus, he despatched a courier to el-'Adel to summon him 
to that city. On the 24th of Rabi'a I. (June 14, 1186), 
el-'Adel set out from Aleppo with a small escort, and pro- 
ceeded by rapid marches to Damascus. There he remained 
in attendance upon the Sultan, and was admitted to several 
conferences and interviews with him. By the beginning of 
Jomada I. the main parts of the business were settled, and 
it was decided that el-'Adel should return to Egypt and 
surrender Aleppo to the Sultan. El-'Adel sent certain 
of his friends to Aleppo to fetch his family. El-Melek 
ez-Zaher — may God protect him 1^ — was at this time with 
his father the Sultan, together with his brother el-Melek 
el-'Aziz. The Sultan had made it a condition of el-Melek 
el-'Adel's return to Egypt, that that prince should act as 
atdbeg^ (or guardian) to el-Melek el-'Aziz. He entrusted 
the young prince to el-'Adel, who was to undertake his 
education. The government of Aleppo was given to el- 
Melek ez-Zaher. 

El-'Adel himself told me : * When this arrangement had 
been concluded, I went to pay my respects to el-Melek 
el-'Aziz and el-Melek ez-Zaher. I found them together, 
and sat down between them, saying to el-Melek el-'Aziz : 
" My lord, the Sultan has commanded me to enter your 
service, and to set out with you for Egypt. I know that 
there are a great number of wicked people, some of whom 
will come to you, and will abuse me, and counsel you not 
to trust me. If you intend to listen to them, tell me now, 
so that I may not go with you (into Egypt)." He replied : 

^ This phrase in Arabic is never used except in speaking of a 
reigning prince, and at the time when our author was writing el-Melek 
ez-Zaher was Lord of Aleppo, and of the northern parts of Syria. 

2 Atabe^; Turkish from Ata, 'father,' and %'- 'lord'— a guardian. 


" I shall not listen to them ; how could I do so ?" I then 
turned to el-Melek ez-Zaher, and said : " I know quite well 
that your brother might listen to men who devise mischief, 
and that, if he did cause me that grief, I could not rely 
upon anyone but you." He answered : " Bless you ! all 
will go well." ' A short time afterwards the Sultan sent 
his son el-Melek ez-Zaher to Aleppo with the title of 
Sultan, because he knew that this city was the basis (the 
foundation) and the seat of his whole power. It was on 
this account that he had made such great efforts to get 
possession of it. Once he had established his supremacy 
there, he relaxed his watch over the countries to the east- 
ward (Upper Mesopotamia, Mosul, and Khelat), contenting 
himself with their assurances of loyalty, and promises of 
support in the Holy War. He entrusted this city to his 
son, being confident in his tact, decision, and watchfulness, 
and in the strength and nobility of his character. El-Melek 
ez-Zaher set out for Aleppo, accompanied by Hossam 
ed-Din Bishara, who was to act as shihna (governor of the 
city), and 'Aisa Ibn Belashu as vali (governor of the district). 
At 'Ain el-Mobareka (* Holy Spring '), he was received by 
the inhabitants of Aleppo, who had come forth to welcome 
him. This was at day-break, on the 9th of Jomada II., 
582 (August 27, 1186). Towards mid-day he went up to 
the castle, whilst the city gave itself up to manifestations 
of delight. He extended the wing of his justice over 
them, and rained down his bounty upon them. We will 
return to el-Melek el-'Aziz and el-Melek el-'Adel. When 
the Sultan had decided on the privileges and honours they 
were respectively to enjoy, he wrote to el-Melek el-Mozaffer, 
informing him that el-Melek el-'Aziz was setting out for 
Egypt accompanied by his uncle, and commanding him to 
return to Syria. This prince was so aggrieved by these 
instructions that he could not conceal his dissatisfaction. 


and he formed a plan of going over to the nomad Arabs of 
Barka.^ The chief officers of state reproved him loudly for 
thinking of such a thing, and represented to him that such 
a step would ruin him for ever with his uncle the Sultan, 
* and God alone knows/ they said, * what would be the 
consequence/ He recognised the wisdom of this advice, 
and sent an answer to the Sultan signifying his obedience. 
When he had handed the province over to his successor, 
he set out to present himself before the Sultan, who, on 
his side, came as far as Merj es-Soffer^ to receive him. 
Their meeting took place on the 23rd of Sh'aban that year 
(November 8, 11 86). The Sultan showed great satisfaction 
at seeing him, and gave him the city of Hamah (as an 
appanage). El-Mozaffer betook himself to that place. On 
the 26th of the month of Ramadan (December 10), el-Melek 
ez-Zaher married one of the daughters of el-Melek 
el-'Adel, to whom he had been betrothed. The marriage 
of el-Melek el-Afdel with the daughter of Nasr ed-Din 
(Muhammad), son of Asad ed-Din (Shirkuh), took place in 
the month of Shawal (December to January, 11 86- 11 87). 

^ He proposed to go and join Karakush, one of Salah ed- Din's 
generals, who had taken Barka in Cyrenaica, and, with the assistance 
of the nomad Arabs of that country and Mauretania, was carrying on 
a successful war of conquest in Tripolitania and Tunisia. Some slight 
information about Karakush may be found in the second volume of 
Baron de Slane's translation, entitled ' Histoire des Berbers.' 

2 Merj es-Soffer lay in the Hauran, about thirty-eight geographical 
miles S.W. of Damascus. 




At the beginning of the month of Moharrem, 583 (March, 
A.D. 1 187), the Sultan resolved to march against el-Kerak, 
and sent to Aleppo for the troops of that city. He left 
Damascus on the 15th of the same month, and encamped 
in the district of Kuneitera,^ awaiting the arrival of the 
armies from Egypt and Syria. As each body of troops 
arrived, he ordered them to* send out detachments into the 
countries on the coast to ravage and pillage wherever they 
went. This order was obeyed. He remained in the country 
round el-Kerak until the arrival of the caravan of Syrian 
pilgrims on their return from Mecca, whom his presence 
protected from the attacks of the enemy. Another caravan, 
coming from Egypt, brought all the people of el-Melek 
el-Mozaffer's household, and all the household-goods that 
he had left in that country. The army from Aleppo was 
delayed for some time, for they were watching the Franks 
in Armenia, the country of Ibn Laon. It happened that 
the king of the Franks had died, and bequeathed the chief 
power to his nephew.- El-Melek el-Mozaffer was at that 
time at Hamah. When the Sultan heard this news, he 
ordered the troops at Aleppo to invade the enemy's terri- 

» Kuneitera, in the N. of the Hauran, between Damascus and 

2 This is not quite exact. Baldwin IV. had died in 1185, and the 
child, Baldwin V., son of Sibyl, sister of Baldwin IV., died September, 
1 186. Salah ed-Din took advantage of the dissensions between the 
party of Sibyl, who married Guy of Lusignan, and the party of Isabel, 
first married to the step-son of Renaud of Chatillon. 


tory, so as to damp the zeal which animated the Franks. 
El-Mozafifer led the troops from Aleppo to Harim, and 
there took up his quarters, to show the enemy that that 
part (of Syria) was not neglected. The Sultan (having left 
el-Kerak) returned to Syria, and on the i^th of Rabi'a I. 
(May 27, 1 1 87) set up his camp at 'Ashtera.^ Here he 
was joined by his son, el-Melek el-Afdel, and by Mozaffer 
ed-Din, son of Zein ed-Din, and the rest of the army. 
The Sultan had instructed el-Melek el-Mozaffer to conclude 
a treaty with the Franks, which should secure the neigh- 
bourhood of Aleppo from being disturbed. In this way 
he thought he should be free from any anxiety, and could 
give his whole attention to the enemy on the coast. El- 
Mozaffer made peace (with the people of Antioch) during 
the last ten days of Rabi'a I. (beginning of June), and then 
marched towards Hamah to join the Sultan, and take part 
in the projected expedition. He set out with all the 
troops from the East that he could collect — that is to 
say, with detachments from Mosul, under Mas'ud Ibn ez- 
Z'aferani, and from Mardin. The Sultan went out to 
meet them about the middle of Rabi'a H., and received 
them with great honours. He reviewed his troops shortly 
afterwards at Tell Tesil,^ preparatory to the expedition 
upon which they were starting, and ordered the leaders of 
the flanks and the centre to take up their positions. 

^ The water supply S. of Tel/ 'Ashterah is more abundant than, else- 
where in the Hauran, and the position served as a base equally against 
Kerak or Galilee. 

2 xesll, about 5 miles S.W. of Ndwa, and N.W. of Tell 'Ashterah, 
in the Jaulan, E. of the Sea of Galilee. 




The Sultan believed that it was his duty, above all things, 
to devote his whole strength to fulfil the command we have 
received to war against the infidels, in recognition of God's 
mercy in establishing his dominion, in making him master 
of so many lands, and granting him the obedience and 
devotion of his people. Therefore he sent an order to 
all his troops to join him at 'Ashtera. When he had 
mustered and reviewed them, as we have narrated above, 
he made his dispositions, and marched full speed upon the 
enemy's territory — may God confound their hopes ! — on the 
17th of the month Rabi'a II. (June 26, 1187). He used 
always to attack the enemy on a Friday, at the hour of 
prayer, believing that the prayers that the preachers 
were offering from their pulpits at that time would bring 
him good luck, because their petitions that day were 
generally granted. At this hour, then, he began his 
march,^ holding his army in readiness to fight. He heard 
that the Franks, having received intelligence of his muster- 
ing of troops, had assembled in the plain of Seffuria,"^ 
in the territory of Acre, and meant to come out and meet 

I Melek el-Afdal, advancing by the bridges S. of the Sea of Galilee, 
towards Tabor and Nazareth, encountered the Templars and Hospi- 
tallers coming from Fuleh. In the ensuing fight the Grand Master of 
the Hospital and the Marshal of the Temple were killed. A general 
advance was then ordered by Salah ed-Din. This happened near Kefr 
Kenna on May i. See 'Jacques de Vitry,' p. 100. 

"" SeffHrieh is 3^ miles N. of Nazareth. The springs where the 
camp was fixed are i mile S. of the village. Hattin was 10 miles to 


him and give him battle. He therefore took up a position 
close to the Sea of Tiberias, hard by a village called es-Sen- 
n^bra.^ He next encamped on the top of the hill that lies 
to the west of Tiberias. There he remained ready for 
battle, thinking that the Franks would advance and attack 
him as soon as they had ascertained his movements; 
but they did not stir from their position. It was on Wed- 
nesday, the 2 1st of this same month (June 30, 1187), that 
the Sultan pitched his camp there. Seeing that the enemy 
were not moving, he left his infantry drawn up opposite 
the enemy and went down to Tiberias with a troop of light 
cavalry. He attacked that city and carried it by assault 
within an hour, devoting it to slaughter, burning, and 
sacking. All that were left of the inhabitants were taken 
prisoner. The castle alone held out.^ When the enemy 
heard the fate of Tiberias, they were forced to break 
through their policy of inaction, to satisfy this call upon 
their honour, and they set out for Tiberias forthwith to 
drive the invaders back. The pickets of the Moslem 
army discerned their movement, and sent an express to 
inform the Sultan. When he received this message he 
detached a sufficient force to blockade the castle, and then 
rejoined the army with his suite. The two armies met on 
the summit of the hill to the west of Tiberias. This was 
on the evening of Thursday, the 22nd of the same month. 
Darkness separated the combatants, who passed the night 
under arms in order of battle, until the following day, 
Friday, the 23rd (July 2, 1187). Then the warriors of 

1 Now es-Senndbra (Sinnabris), a ruin W. of Jordan, at the S. end of 
the Sea of Galilee. Salah ed-Din crossed by the Jtsr es-Sidd bridge, 
called also Jisr es-Senndbra. His march to Hattin, on the plateau 
W. of Tiberias, was about 9 miles N.W. His base might have been 
threatened from Fuleh and Beisan. The advance from Seffurieh to 
Hattin was fatal, on account of want of water. 

2 The fortress was held by the wife of Raymond of Tripoli. 


bo|:h armies mounted their steeds and charged their oppo- 
nents ; the soldiers in the vanguard discharged their arrows ; 
and the infantry came into action and fought furiously. 
This took place in the territory belonging to a village 
called Lubia.^ The Franks saw they must bite the dust, 
and came on as though driven to certain death ; before 
them lay disaster and ruin, and they were convinced that 
the next day would find them numbered amongst the 
dead.2 The fight raged obstinately ; every horseman 
hurled himself against his opponent until victory was 
secured, and destruction fell upon the infidels. Night with 
its blackness put an end to the battle. Terrible encounters 
took place that day ; never in the history of the generations 
that have gone have such feats of arms been told. The 
night had been spent under arms, each side thinking every 
moment that they would be attacked. The Moslems, 
knowing that behind them lay the Jordan, and in front the 
territory of the enemy, felt that God alone was able to 
save them. God, having granted His aid to the Moslems, 
gave them success, and sent them victory according to His 
decree. Their infantry charged from all sides ; the centre 
came on like one man, uttering a mighty cry ; God filled 
the hearts of the infidels with terror (for He has said), * Due 
from Us it was to help the believers ' (Kur^n xxx. 46). The 
count (Raymond of Tripoli), the most intelligent man of 
that race, and famous for his keenness of perception, seeing 
signs of the catastrophe impending over his brothers in 
religion, was not prevented by thoughts of honour from 
taking measures for his personal safety. He fled in the 
beginning of the action, before the fighting had become 
serious, and set out in the direction of Tyre. Several 

» Lubia was 9 miles E. of Sefifurieh, and 2 miles S.W. of Hattin. 
The village is supplied only by rain-water cisterns. 
2 Literally^ amongst those who visit the tombs. 


Moslems started in pursuit of him, but he succeeded in 
evading them ; true believers had nothing thereafter to 
fear from his cunning.^ The upholders of Islam surrounded 
the upholders of infidelity and impiety on every side, 
overwhelming them vi^ith arrows and harassing them with 
their swords. One body of the enemy took to flight, but 
they were pursued by the Moslem warriors, and not one of 
the fugitives escaped. . Another band climbed Hattin hill, 
so called from the name of a village, near which is the 
tomb of the holy patriarch Shu'aib (Jethro).^ The Moslems 
hemmed them in, and lighted fires all round them, so that, 
tortured by thirst and reduced to the last extremity, they 
gave themselves up to escape death. Their leaders were 
taken captive, and the rest were killed or made prisoners. 
Among the leaders who surrendered were King Geoffrey,^ 
the King's brother,^ Prince Arnat (Renaud de Chatillon), 
Lord of el-Kerak, and of esh-Shobek, the son of el-Honferi 
(Honfroi de Toron), the son of the Lord of Tiberias (Ray- 
mond of Tripoli), the chief of the Templars, the Lord of 
Jibeil,^ and the chief of the Hospitallers. The others who 

^ He was killed soon after by the Assassins. 

2 The tomb of Nel>y Shii'aib (Jethro) is still shown on the hill W. of 
the village of Hattin. 

3 Throughout his work our author makes the mistake of calling 
King Guy, Kijtg Geoffrey. 

4 Ibn el-Athir also, in his ' Kamel,' says that the king's brother was 
amongst the prisoners. We read in Tmad ed-Din's ' Fath el-Kossi ' : 
'They brought before the Sultan King Guy, his brother Geoffrey, 
Hugh, Lord of Jibeil, Honfroi, Prince Arnat, Lord of el-Kerak, etc' 
According to the account of Raoul Coggeshale, who was present at 
the battle, the king's brother was amongst those taken prisoner, and 
from the continuator of William of Tyre we learn that Aimaury, the 
king's brother and constable of Jerusalem, was one of the prisoners 
made that day. He afterwards became King of Cyprus in succession 
to Guy. See 'Jacques de Vitry,' p. 107, where Geoffrey is noticed at 
the siege of Acre. 

5 His name was Hugh III. de I'Embriaco. 



were missing had met their death ; and as to the common 
people, some were killed and others taken captive. Of 
their whole army none remained alive, except the prisoners. 
More than one of their chief leaders accepted captivity to 
save his life. A man, whom I believe to be reliable, told 
me that he saw one soldier in the Hauran leading more 
than thirty prisoners, tied together with a tent cord. He 
had taken them all himself, so great had been the panic 
caused by their defeat. 

We will here narrate the fate of those leaders who 
escaped with their lives. The count, who had fled, 
reached Tripoli, and was there, by the grace of God, 
carried off by pleurisy. The Hospitallers and Templars 
the Sultan resolved to execute, and he spared not a single 
one. Salah ed-Din had sworn to put Prince Arnat to 
death if he ever fell into his hands, and the reason he took 
that oath is this : A caravan coming from Egypt, and 
taking advantage of the truce, went quite close to esh- 
Shobek, where the prince then happened to be. Thinking 
there was nothing to fear, they halted in the neighbourhood 
of the place ; but this man set upon them, in defiance of 
his oath, and killed (a number) of them. The travellers in 
vain besought him for mercy in the name of God, telling 
him there was a treaty of peace between him and the 
Moslems. He only answered by insulting the Holy Prophet. 
When the Sultan heard what he had done, he was com- 
pelled by the Faith and by his determination to protect his 
people to swear to take this man's life whenever he should 
fall into his power. After God had granted him this 
victory, he stayed at the entrance of his tent (for the tent 
itself was not yet set up), and there he sat to receive 
his soldiers, who came to win his approval of their 
services, bringing the prisoners they had made and the 
leaders they had found. As soon as the tent was pitched 


the Sultan went to sit within, full of joy and gratitude for 
the favour which God had just granted him. He then 
commanded King Geoffrey, and his brother, and Prince 
Arnat (Renaud) to be brought. He gave a bowl of sherbet 
made with iced rose-water to the King, who was suffering 
severely from thirst. Geoffrey drank part of it, and then 
offered the bowl to Prince Arnat. The Sultan said to the 
interpreter : 'Tell the King that it is he, and not I, who is 
giving this man to drink.' He had adopted the admirable 
and generous custom of the Arabs, who grant life to the 
captive who has eaten or drunk of their viands. He then 
ordered his men to take them to a place prepared for their 
reception, and, after they had eaten, he summoned them 
again to his presence. He had only a few servants at that 
time in his tent. He seated the King at the entrance, then 
summoned the prince, and reminded him of what he had 
said, adding : ' Behold, I will support Muhammad against 
thee!'^ He then called upon him to embrace Islam, and, 
on his refusal, drew his sabre and struck him a* blow which 
severed his arm from the shoulder. Those who were 
present quickly despatched the prisoner, and God hurled 
his soul into hell. The corpse was dragged out and thrown 
down at the entrance of the tent. When the King saw the 
way in which his fellow -captive had been treated, he 
thought he was to be the second victim ; but the Sultan 
had him brought into the tent and calmed his fears. ' It is 
not the wont of kings,' said he, ' to kill kings; but that man 
had transgressed all bounds, and therefore did I treat him 
thus.-* The conquerors spent that night in rejoicings ; 
every voice chanted praise to God, and on all sides rose 
cries of 'A//ak Akbdr !' ('God is most great!') and 'La 
ilaha W Allah /' (' There is no other god but God !') till 

^ See p. 43. 



dawn. On Sunday, the 25th of Rabi'a II. (July 4, 1187), 
the Sultan went down to Tiberias, and the fortress of that 
place was surrendered to him in the afternoon of the same 
day. He remained there until Tuesday, and then marched 
upon Acre. He arrived before that place on Wednesday, 
the last day of Rabi'a II. (July 8). On the following day, 
the first of Jomada I., he began the assault and took the 
city. He set free more than four thousand captives who 
had been detained there, and took possession of all the 
treasure, stores, and merchandise in the place, of which 
there were enormous quantities, for this city was a great 
centre of commerce. The troops were sent out in detach- 
ments to overrun the coast, taking the fortresses, castles, 
and strongholds. Nablus fell into their hands, as well as 
Haifa, Caesarea, Seffuria, and Nazareth, for all these places 
had been left defenceless by reason of the death or captivity 
of their protectors. The Sultan made arrangements for 
the government of Acre, and gave his soldiers a share of 
the booty and prisoners. He then marched in the direction 
of Tibnin,^ and sat down before that place on Sunday, the 
1 2th of Jomada I. (July 20). As this was a very strong 
fortress, he set up his mangonels, and by frequent assaults 
reduced the place to the last extremity. The garrison was 
composed of men of tried valour and very zealous for their 
faith, therefore they held out with wonderful endurance; 
but God came to the Sultan's assistance, and he carried the 
place by storm on the 18th of the month, and led the sur- 
vivors of the garrison into captivity. From this place he 
marched upon Sidon, which he captured on the day after 
his arrival. As soon as he had organized a regular govern- 
ment, he set out for Beirut, and took up a position to 

I Tibnin (Toron), in Upper Galilee, 17 miles S.W. of Binias. The 
castle was built in 1107 by Hugh of St. Omer, Lord of Tiberias. See 
* Jacques de Vitry,' p. 18. 


attack that place on the 22nd of the same month. He set 
up his mangonels, storming the city several times, and 
maintaining the attack without any cessation until the 
29th, when he succeeded in capturing it. Whilst he was 
occupied before Beirut, a detachment of his army had taken 
Jibeil.^ Having completed the conquest of this district, he 
judged it expedient to march against Ascalon. He had 
made an attempt upon Tyre, but renounced it because his 
men were scattered through the districts on the coast, each 
soldier engaged in pillaging on his own account, and 
the army was growing weary of ceaseless fighting and 
continual war. Besides, all the Franks of the coast had 
collected in Tyre, therefore he thought it best to march 
against Ascalon, a city which he believed would be easy to 
take. On the 26th of Jomada H. (September 2) he en- 
camped before the city, having taken on his march a 
number of places, such as er-Ramla, Yebna, and ed-Darun.^ 
He set up his mangonels against Ascalon, and, after a 
vigorous assault, succeeded in taking it on the last day of 
the same month. He remained encamped outside the city 
whilst detachments of his troops took Ghazza, Beit Jibrin, 
and en-Natrun,^ which places surrendered without a blow. 
Thirty-five years had passed since the taking of Ascalon 
by the Franks ; they had captured the city on the 27th of 
Jomada H., in the year 548 (September 19, A.D. ii53)> 

1 /I'dei'l (Gebal), N. of Beirut. This march cut the communication 
by land between Tyre and Tripoli. . 

2 Ed Dariin is Darum now Deir el-Beldli^ S. of Gaza, built about 
A.D. 1 1 70. 

3 Beit Jibrin (Gibelin), 18 miles E. of Ascalon, was fortified by King 
Fulk in 1 1 34. For Natrun, see p. 32. 

4 The final assault on the city appears to have been really on 
August 12, 1 1 53. 




Having taken Ascalon and the districts round Jerusalem 
(el Kuds), the Sultan devoted all his energies to prepara- 
tions for an expedition against the city. He called to- 
gether the various detachments of his army that were 
scattered through the coast-districts, and returned glutted 
with pillage and rapine ; and then marched upon Jerusalem, 
strong in the hope that God would uphold and direct him. 
He was anxious to make the most of his opportunities now 
that the door of success had been opened to him, following 
the advice of the Holy Prophet, who said : * He to whom 
the door of success has been opened must take his oppor- 
tunity and enter in, for he knows not when the door may 
be shut upon him.' It was on Sunday, the 15th of the 
month of Rejeb in the year 583 (September 20, 1187 
A.D.), that he took up his position to the west of the city. 
The place was teeming with soldiers, both horse and foot, 
and their numbers, according to the best accounts, exceeded 
sixty thousand, without reckoning women and children. 
The Sultan shifted his position to the north of the city, 
thinking this would be best, and directed his mangonels 
against the walls. Being very strong in bowmen, he 
pressed the place so closely by constant assaults and 
skirmishes that his miners were able to make a breach in 
one of the northern angles of the wall overlooking the 
Wadi Jehennum.^ The enemies of God saw they were 
menaced by a disaster which they could not escape, and 

* lVd(^/ el-Jehennum is the Moslem name for the Kidron Valley, E. 
of Jerusalem. 


by divers signs it was revealed to them that the city v^'ould 
fall into the hands of the Moslems. Their hearts were filled 
with dread when they thought of their bravest warriors 
slain or taken captive, their strongholds destroyed or 
captured by the Moslems. Expecting to suffer the same 
fate as their brothers, and to die by the same sword that 
had cut them down, they adopted the only alternative, and 
asked fof a treaty, that their lives might be spared. After 
messengers had several times passed backwards and for- 
wards between the two parties, a treaty was concluded, 
and the Sultan was put in possession of Jerusalem on 
Friday, the 27th of Rejeb (October 2, 1187), on the 
anniversary of the night of the ascension (of the Holy 
Prophet into heaven), an event which is foreshadowed in 
the glorious Kuran (xvii. i).^ What a wonderful coinci- 
dence ! God allowed the Moslems to take the city as a 
celebration of the anniversary of their Holy Prophet's 
midnight journey. Truly this is a sign that this deed was 
pleasing to Almighty God ; and this mighty conquest was 
a testimony (for the Faith) to a multitude of people — 
learned men, dervishes, and fakirs — who were brought 
thither by the news of the Sultan's victories and successes 
in the lands on the coast, and by the report that he was 
going to undertake an expedition against Jerusalem. 
Therefore all men learned (in the law) came to join the 
Sultan, both from Egypt and from Syria ; there was not a 
single well-known doctor but came to the camp. Every 
voice was raised in shouts, calling upon God, and proclaim- 
ing His unity and power. On the very day of the capitula- 

1 The Kuran says nothing of the legend of Muhammad's translation 
from Mecca to Jerusalem. The passage cited speaks of the prophet's 
going to the 'distant sanctuary' i^El-Haram el-Aksa). The whole 
tradition of the night journey and ascent from the Sakhra to heaven 
is late, and Beha ed-Din therefore says only that it is 'foreshadowed' 
in the allusion cited. 


tion Friday's prayer was solemnized in the city, and the 
khatib delivered the sermon.^ The huge cross that rose 
from the dome of the Sakhra was thrown down. In this 
manner, by means of the Sultan, God accorded a magnifi- 
cent triumph to Islam. The chief condition stipulated by 
the treaty was that each man should pay ten Tyrian dinars 
as his ransom ; each woman five ; children, both boys and 
girls, were to pay only one dinar each. Every one who 
paid this ransom was to receive his freedom. God in His 
mercy delivered the Moslem prisoners who were in 
captivity in the city to the number of more than three 
thousand. The Sultan took possession of the whole of the 
booty, and distributed it amongst his emirs and soldiers. 
He also assigned a portion to the jurists, doctors of law, 
dervishes, and other people who had come to the camp. 
By his orders, all those who had paid their ransom were 
conducted to their place of refuge — that is to say, to the 
city of Tyre. I have been told that when the Sultan left 
Jerusalem he retained nothing whatever out of all these 
treasures, and yet they amounted to nearly two hundred 
and twenty thousand dinars. He left the city on Friday, 
the 25th of Sh'aban (October 30). 



The Sultan, having established his supremacy upon a firm 
basis both in Jerusalem and on the coast, resolved to 
march against Tyre, for he knew that if he delayed in this 
undertaking, it would be very difficult to carry it to a 

Ibn Khallikin (ii. 634) has preserved this sermon for us. 


successful issue. He repaired first to Acre, where he 
stopped to inspect the city, and then set out for Tyre on 
Friday, the 5th of Ramadan (November 8, 1187). When 
he came within sight of that city he pitched his camp, 
pending the arrival of his instruments of war. As soon as he 
had determined on undertaking this expedition, he had sent 
to his son el-Melek ez-Zaher, commanding him to join him. 
He had left that prince at Aleppo to protect that part of 
Syria whilst he himself was engaged in the conquest of the 
countries on the coast. Ez-Zaher reached the camp on the 
1 8th of Ramadan, and his arrival gave his father the 
greatest satisfaction. As soon as the mangonels, moveable 
towers, mantelets, and other instruments of war had been 
brought in, the Sultan took up his position before the city 
on the 22nd of the month, and after completely surround- 
ing it, began a brisk attack. The Egyptian fleet, which he 
had summoned to his assistance, blockaded the city by sea, 
whilst his army hemmed it in on the land side. His 
brother, el-Melek el-'Adel, whom he had left behind in 
Jerusalem to settle affairs, received a command to join him, 
and reached the camp on the 5th of Shawal (December 8). 
A body of troops, which the Sultan had detached to lay 
siege to Hunin, received the surrender of that place on the 
23rd of the same month. 



The fleet was commanded by a certain man named el-Faris 
Bedran, a brave and clever sailor. 'Abd el-Mohsen, the 
High Admiral,! had instructed the ships to be watchful and 

I Rd-is el-Bahrein, in Arabic, ' chief of the two seas '—that is to say, 
of the Mediterranean and the Red Sea. 


vigilant, that the enemy might not find any opportunity of 
doing them harm ; but they neglected this advice, and 
omitted to keep a good watch during the night. Therefore 
the infidel fleet came out of the harbour of Tyre, fell upon 
them unawares, took five of their ships with two captains, 
and killed a great number of Moslem sailors. This took 
place on the 27th of the month of Shawal (December 30). 
The Sultan was much cast down by this occurrence, and 
as it was now the beginning of winter, and torrents of rain 
were falling, the troops were unable to fight any longer. 
He summoned his emirs to a council of war, and they 
advised him to strike camp, so as to give the soldiers 
a little rest, and to make preparations for renewing the 
siege later on. 

He followed their advice and retired, dismounting his 
mangonels, and taking them with him. He ordered all 
that could not be transported to be burnt. He took 
his departure on the 2nd of the month of Zu el-K'ada 
in the same year (January 3, 1188). He then dismissed 
the different bands that formed his army, and gave per- 
mission to the detachments to return to their respective 
homes. He himself with his own particular troops took 
up his quarters in Acre, and remained there until the year 
584 (beginning of March, 1188 A.D.). 



In the beginning of that year he turned his attention 
to the fortresses which still remained in the hands of 
the Franks, and thought it would be best to get posses- 


sion of these in order to discourage the garrison at Tyre. 
During the first ten days of the month of Moharrem 
(March 2-12) he encamped before Kaukab.^ He began 
with this stronghold, because the troops he had stationed 
there, to prevent succours from being thrown in, had allowed 
themselves to be surprised by the Franks in a night attack. 
The Sultan set out from Acre with his own troops only, 
and sat down before the place ; he had given leave to 
the rest of his army. His brother, el-'x\del, had returned 
to Egypt, and his son, Ez-Zaher, to Aleppo. On the 
march they suffered severely from the cold and snow, 
but making it a point of honour to avenge his men, he 
encamped before the fortress, and kept up a smart attack 
for some time. It was at this place that I had the honour 
of being presented to him. In the year 583 I had per- 
formed the pilgrimage to Mecca, and was on the spot 
when Ibn el-Mokaddem was mortally wounded at 'Arafat, 
the very day that the pilgrims visit that hill. It occurred 
in consequence of a difference that arose between him and 
Tastikin, the leader of the pilgrimage, on the subject of 
his right to beat cymbals and drums, which Tastikin would 
not allow him to do. Ibn el-Mokaddem was one of the 
chief emirs of Syria, and had distinguished himself by 
his honourable deeds, and the number of his campaigns ; 
therefore God had decreed that he should be wounded at 
'Arafa on the day of 'Arafa ; that he should be carried, 
wounded as he was, to Mena ; that he should die in that 
place on Thursday, the day of the great feast ; that his 
funeral oration should be pronounced that same evening 
in the mosque of el-Khaif, and that he should be buried 
in el-M'ala.2 He could have had no happier fate. This 

^ Kaiikab (Belvoir), see p. 25. 

2 The allusions are to the rites of the Haj, including the visit of 
pilgrims to Mount 'Arafat, the Valley of Mena, etc., close to Mecca. 


occurrence touched the Sultan deeply. On my return 
from the pilgrimage I took the road to Syria, intending 
to go to Jerusalem, and j^ visit both (the shrine of) the 
Holy Prophet (the Sakhra), and (that of) the patriarch 
Abraham — peace be upon him ! — (at Hebron). I left 
Damascus, and set out for Jerusalem. When the Sultan 
heard of my arrival, he thought I had come on an embassy 
from the government of Mosul. He summoned me to 
his presence, and received me with every mark of con- 
sideration.. After I had taken leave of him, and was 
about to proceed to Jerusalem, I received a command 
through one of his officers to wait upon him again on 
my return from that city. I thought he wished to give 
me some important message for the Mosul government, 
and I arrived, on my return from Jerusalem, on the 
very day that he raised the siege of Kaukab. He saw 
that it would be necessary to employ a great number of 
troops to reduce this place, for it was very strong, most 
amply provisioned, and garrisoned by determined men 
whom, so far, the war had spared. He entered Damascus 
on the 6th of Rabi'a I. (May 5, 1188), the very day that 
I arrived there on my return from Jerusalem. He had 
been absent sixteen months from Damascus. On the 
fifth day after his arrival, he heard that the Franks had 
marched upon Jibeil with a view of surprising that place. 
As soon as he received this news, he lost not a moment, 
but left the city forthwith, and marched towards Jibeil, 
sending out in all directions to summon his troops. When 
the Franks heard he had taken the field, they gave up 
their attempt. At this time the Sultan received a message, 
saying that 'Im^d ed-Din (Zenghi, son of Maudud, Prince 
of Mosul), and Mozaffer ed-Din (Kukbiiri) had just arrived 
at Aleppo with troops from Mosul, to place themselves 
under his orders, and take part in the Holy War. He 


then marched towards the fortress of the Kurds,^ on his 
way to the upper sea-coast (the maritime districts of Upper 



On the first day of the month Rabi'a II. (May 30, 1188), 
he took up his position on a hill facing the fortress of the 
Kurds, and dispatched couriers to el-Melek ez-Zaher, and 
el-MeIek el-Mozaffer, commanding them to join their 
forces, and take up a position at Tizin,^ to cover the 
districts round Antioch. The troops from the eastern 
provinces mustered in the place where the Sultan was 
encamped, and put themselves under his command. It 
was here that I came upon him, just as I was setting out 
on my journey to Mosul. When I presented myself before 
him, he seemed very glad to see me again, and gave me 
the most gracious reception. During my stay in Damascus 
I had compiled a treatise on the Holy War, in which I 
had inserted all the laws and customs in any way con- 
nected with it. I presented this book to him, and he 
accepted it with pleasure, and made it a frequent study. 
I kept asking for permission to depart, but he always 
put me off, and meanwhile summoned me constantly 
to his presence. He even commended me in public, and 
spoke very favourably of me, as I have been told by people 

1 Hosn el-Akrdd, 'castle of the Kurds ' (called by the Franks Crac), 
on the slope of Lebanon, half-way from Emesa to Tripoli, a castle of 
the Knights Hospitallers. 

2 Read : And takes Antartus. 

3 Tizin lies about 30 geographical miles N.E. of Antioch. 


who were present. He remained encamped on the same 
spot during the whole of the month Rabi'a II. (June), 
and during the course of that month marched to the 
fortress of the Kurds, and blockaded it for a day to 
reconnoitre the ground. He thought he had not time 
to besiege the place, and as the troops he had called out 
had now mustered round his standard, he sent two ex- 
peditions into the districts round Tripoli. They were 
ordered to pillage, and to ascertain the military strength 
of the country, and he proposed to apply the spoils to 
the maintenance of his army. Towards the close of this 
same month he issued the following order : * We are going 
to enter the districts on the coast ; provisions are scarce 
there, and as the enemy will meet us on their own ground, 
they will surround us on every side. Therefore you will 
have to provide yourselves with sufficient food for one 
month.' He then instructed 'Aisa the jurist to inform 
me that he did not intend to allow me to return to Mosul. 
Since God had filled my heart with a great affection for 
the prince from the moment I first saw him, and because 
I had observed his devotion to the Holy War, I consented 
to remain. It was on the first day of the month Jomada I., 
in the year 584 (June 28, 11 88 A.D.), that I entered his 
service, and on the same day he marched into the coast- 

All that I have narrated thus far is founded on what I 
have been told by trustworthy persons, who were present 
at the occurrences they described. Henceforth I shall write 
nothing but what I myself have witnessed, or have gleaned 
from people worthy of credit, whose words seemed to me 
as deserving of belief as the testimony of my own eyes. 
May God in His mercy assist us ! 

On Friday, the 4th of Jomada I., the Sultan drew up 
his troops in order of battle, and marched against the 


enemy. Each part of the army had a special position 
assigned to it : the right wing, under 'Imad ed-Din Zenghi, 
led the van ; the centre followed ; then came the left wing, 
under Mozaffer ed-Din, son of Zein ed-Din. The baggage 
was placed in the centre, and advanced with the army. 
When we reached the appointed place, we halted, and 
passed the night in the enemy's country. On resuming 
his march, the Sultan next halted at El-'Orima (' the little 
sand-dune'), but made no hostile demonstration; and on 
the 6th of the same month (July 3), he arrived before ^ 
Antarsus (Tortosa). He had not intended to stop here, 
Jebela^ being the object of his march ; but as Antarsus 
appeared to be easy of capture, he resolved to attack it. 
He recalled the right wing, and ordered it to take up a 
position on the shore (on one side, of the city), and the left 
wing he stationed on the shore on the other side. He 
himself took up a position between the two, so that the 
army completely surrounded the place by land, both flanks 
resting on the sea. The city of Antarsus was built close to 
the sea, and was protected by two strong towers almost 
like castles. The Sultan rode up close to the city and 
gave the order to begin the assault. The troops ran to 
arms {literally, donned the breastplate of war), and stormed 
the place so vigorously that the garrison were soon at their 
last gasp. Before they had finished pitching the tents the 
Mosjems had scaled the walls and carried the place by 
storm. The conquerors seized everything in the city, both 
men and goods, and evacuated it, carrying off many cap- 
tives and great riches. The servants, whose duty it was to 
pitch the tents, left their work and joined in the pillage. 
The Sultan had said : ' To-night, please God, we will sup 
in Antarsus ;' and his words came to pass. He returned 

^ Jebela, or Jebal, N. of Tortosa. 


to his tent rejoicing, and we presented ourselves before 
him to congratulate him on his success. Then, according 
to his custom, he ordered a meal to be served, of which 
everyone partook; afterwards he laid siege to the two 
towers. Mozaffer ed-Din, to whom he committed the 
reduction of one of the forts, attacked it without ceasing 
until he had laid it in ruins, and taken the garrison captive. 
The Sultan ordered the walls to be razed, and assigned to 
each of his emirs the task of throwing down a certain 
portion of the earthworks. Whilst they were thus occupied, 
the troops began to besiege the other tower, which was 
very strong, as it was built in an inaccessible place, and its 
walls were constructed of solid masonry ; it was garrisoned 
by all the knights and footmen belonging to the city ; round 
it ran a ditch full of water, and it was furnished with huge 
arbalists^ that wounded people at a great distance, whilst 
the Moslems had no means of injuring (their opponents). 
Therefore the Sultan saw that he would have to postpone 
the attack, and turn his attention to more important 
matters. He occupied himself with the destruction of the 
city until it was utterly demolished. The church, held in 
such great reverence by the Christians, and visited by 
pilgrims even from distant lands, was razed to the ground. 
The Sultan ordered the rest of the city to be set on fire, 
and all its buildings were devoured by the flames. Whilst 
they were engaged in this work, the conquerors shouted 
strenuously, glorifying the one and only God. The Sultan 
remained here to complete the destruction of the city until 
the 14th day of the month, and then marched upon Jebela. 
On the road he met his son el-Melek ez-Zaher, whom he 
had summoned from Tizin, and who brought with him all 
the troops that had been stationed in that district. 

^ See p. 57. 




The Sultan arrived before Jebela on the i8th of the month 
Jornada I., and he had scarcely drawn up his army before 
he obtained possession of the town. There happened to be 
Moslem residents there with a kadi to settle their disputes, 
and to him the government of the city had been entrusted. 
This official offered no resistance to the Sultan, but the 
castle held out. The Sultan made one onset against the 
place in order to furnish the garrison with a pretext for 
surrendering, and on the 19th of the month (July 16, 1188) 
the castle capitulated. He remained at Jebela until the 
23rd, when he set out for Laodicea, and took up a position 
before that place on the following day. This is a beautiful 
city, very pleasing to the eye, as is well known ; it possesses 
a celebrated harbour, and two castles, lying side by side, on 
a hill overlooking the town. The Sultan at once invested 
both the city and the castles, but did not place his troops 
between the hill and the city. Then followed a sharp 
attack, our men assaulting the city furiously, whilst cries 
and shouts filled the air on every side. This continued 
until the end of the day, which was the 24th of the month, 
and the city was taken, though the castles still held out. 
The booty was enormous, for it was a commercial city, and 
full of treasure and merchandise. The fall of night parted 
the combatants. On Friday morning the attack on the 
castles was resumed, and a breach made on the north. 
They made this breach sixty cubits deep and four wide, as 
I have been told. Then they climbed the hill, and, getting 
close to the wall, began a brisk assault. The struggle 



raged continuously, and either side threw stones at their 
opponents with their hands. When the garrisons saw the 
ferocity with which our men were attacking them, and how 
close they had approached, they offered to surrender. This 
was on Friday, the 25th of the month. The Sultan granted 
the request of the besieged, and allowed the kadi of Jebela 
to go to them and draw up the treaty. He never refused 
to grant terms when an enemy wished to surrender. The 
besiegers then returned to their tents, worn out with fatigue. 
Very early the following day, Saturday, the kadi was sent 
to the besieged, and helped them to arrange the conditions 
of their treaty. It provided that they should be permitted 
to go free with their families and their belongings, but they 
were to leave to the victors all their stores of corn, their 
military treasure, arms, horses, and instruments of war. 
Still they were allowed a sufficient number of beasts to 
carry them to a place of safety. As day drew to a close, 
the victorious banner of Islam floated over the wall of the 
stronghold. We remained there until the 27th of the 



When the Sultan departed from Loadicea, he marched 
upon Sahyun, on the 29th of Jomada I. surrounded the 
place with his army and set up six mangonels to play on 
the walls. Sahyun^ is a very inaccessible fortress, built on 
the steep slope of a mountain. It is protected by wide 
ravines of fearful depth ; but on one side its only defence 

^ Sahyiin^ called Saone by the Franks, a strong castle on a hill S.E. 
of and in sight of Latakia, a fortress of the Knights Hospitallers. 


is an artificial trench about sixty cubits deep cut out of the 
rock. This fortress has three lines of ramparts, one round 
the precincts, another protecting the castle itself, and a 
third round the keep. On the summit of the keep rose a 
lofty turret, which I noticed had fallen to the ground when 
the Moslems drew near. Our soldiers hailed this as a good 
omen and felt certain of victory. The fortress was attacked 
very smartly from all sides at once, and el-Melek ez-Zaher, 
Lord of Aleppo, brought his mangonel into play. He had 
set it up opposite the stronghold, quite close to the wall, 
but on the other side of the ravine {Wadt), The stones 
hurled from this engine always reached their mark. The 
prince continued to play upon the place till he had made a 
breach in the wall large enough to enable the soldiers to 
climb the rampart. On Friday morning, the second day 
of the month Jomada II., the Sultan gave the command 
to assault, charging the men who had the management of 
the mangonels to shoot without ceasing. Then there arose 
mighty cries and a terrible noise, whilst our men shouted 
the tahlil and the takbir.^ An hour afterwards the Moslems 
had scaled the wall and burst into the courtyard. I saw 
our men seize the pots and eat the food that had just been 
cooked, without leaving off fighting. The people in the 
courtyard fled into the keep, leaving everything behind 
them, and all they abandoned was promptly given up to 
pillage. The besiegers surrounded the walls of the keep, 
and the garrison, thinking they would be annihilated, asked 
for quarter. As soon as this was reported to the Sultan, he 
granted their prayer and allowed them to depart with thei'r 
household goods, but demanded a ransom of ten pieces of 
gold from each man, and five pieces from each woman ; the 

1 The tahlil is the expression La ildha'il 'Allah ah, 'there is no 
deity but God'; the takbir the expression Alldhu akbdr, 'God is 
most great.' — W. 



children were to pay two. Then he took possession of the 
fortress, and remained there whilst his troops took several 
others, such as El-'Aid, Fiha, Blatanis^ (Platanus), etc. 
These castles and little forts were surrendered to (the 
Sultan's) deputies. 



He then set forth upon his march, and on the 6th of 
Jornada H. we arrived at Bekas, a strong fortress built on 
one bank of the Orontes, from the foot of which springs a 
little brook. The army encamped close to the river, and 
the Sultan with a small body of men went up nearer to the 
stronghold. It lies on a lofty hill commanding the Orontes. 
His army invested it on all sides, battering it with their 
mangonels ; and they pressed it so close, that on the 9th 
of the month, by the grace of God, they carried it by 
storm. All those of the garrison who had not been killed 
in the assault were led into captivity, and the contents of 
the place given up to pillage. Close to Bekas there was a 
smaller subordinate fort, which was reached by means of a 
bridge. It is called Esh Shoghr.^ It was very difficult of 
access, for there was no road up to it. The Sultan ordered 

1 The castle of Bldtanis^ or Baldtunus {Mansio Platanus), was close 
to the coast, near Jebel el-Akra (Mons Casius), and was regarded as 
impregnable. It was said to be connected with a small port by a 
tunnel, through which a man could ride. Platanus was 40 M.P. from 
Laodicea on the road to Daphne {Beit el-Ma), near Antioch.— W. 

2 Esh-Shoghr and Bekas were two castles on heights about a bow- 
shot apart, and separated by a fosse-like ravine. They were on the 
direct road from Latakia to Aleppo, and not far from the bridge of 
Kashfahan across the Orontes. The ruins of the two castles, now 
called K. el-Harun and K. es-Sultdn, may still be seen at Esh-Shuji^hry, 
a considerable Moslem village on the Orontes. — W. 


his mangonels to play upon it from all sides, and as the 
garrison had no hope of succour they asked for terms. 
This was on the 13th of the same month. They obtained 
a respite of three days in order that they might obtain 
permission to surrender from the government of Antioch, 
and then they delivered the castle to the Sultan. His 
banner was unfurled on the keep on Friday, the i6th of the 
month. Salah-ed-Din then rejoined the baggage-train and 
despatched his son, el-Melek ez-Zaher, against the fortress 
of Sermaniya.^ Ez-Zaher attacked the place very smartly 
and reduced it to such extremities that he succeeded in 
taking it on Friday, the 23rd of the same month. Since 
the capture of Jebela, of Sermaniya, and of other places 
in the coast lands took place, in each instance on a Friday, 
it was evident that God had heard the prayers of the Moslem 
preachers and looked with favour upon the Sultan's under- 
takings, because a good deed accomplished on that day 
received a double reward. This series of conquests, each 
effected on the Friday of successive weeks, is a thing so 
extraordinary that its parallel has never been recorded in 



The Sultan, attended by an escort of light cavalry, then 
marched to Burzia,^ a very strong and almost inaccessible 

' Serindniya^ or Sermin, is about a day's journey S. of Aleppo on 
the road to Hama. It was noted for its perfumed soap and cotton 
siuffs. The water supply is from rain collected in cisterns, many of 
which are very ancient. — W. 

2 ^urzia, or Burzuya, lay to the N.W. of Afdmia (Apamea, now 
Karat el-Mudik) and on the opposite side of the marshy valley of the 
Orontes. It was about a day's march S. of esh-Shughr, and was so 
strong that its impregnability passed into a proverb.— W. 


fortress. It was built on the crags of a high mountain, 
and was proverbial in all Frank and Moslem lands. Valleys 
surrounded it on all sides, and their depth was more than 
five hundred and seventy cubits. The Sultan's intention 
to besiege this place was strengthened after he had seen 
it ; he ordered the baggage-train forward, and posted it, 
with the rest of the army, at the foot of the mountain 
on which the stronghold was built. This was on the 
24th of the month. On the 25th, very early, he ascended 
the mountain at a great pace, followed by his soldiers, 
his mangonels, and instruments of war. Having surrounded 
the castle, he attacked it from all sides, and played upon 
the walls with the mangonels, both night and day, with- 
out ceasing. On the 27th of the month he divided his 
troops into three sections, each of which was to fight in 
turn for a certain time every day and then rest. In this 
way he contrived that there should be no interruption 
whatever in the attack. 'Imad ed-Din, Prince of Sinjar, 
led the division first on duty ; they fought with all their 
strength until the time came for their relief, and the 
people returned and whetted their teeth for battle. The 
Sultan took command of the second division himself, and 
riding out several paces called upon his men. They 
rushed forward like one man with great shouts, and ran 
up to the wall from all sides. In less than an hour they 
had scaled it, and burst into the castle, which they carried 
by storm. The garrison asked permission to surrender, 
but they had already fallen into the hands of the victors. 
T/ietr faith was of no avail to them when they saw our 
violence (Kuran xl. 85). All that the place contained 
.was given up to pillage, and the men who were taken 
were led into captivity. A great number of people had 
taken refuge there. Burzia was one of their most celebrated 
fortresses. Our troops returned to their tents laden with 


booty, and the Sultan rejoined the baggage-train, over- 
come with joy and delight. The governor of the fortress, 
a person of importance amongst the Franks, and seventeen 
members of his family, were brought before the Sultan. 
The Sultan took compassion upon them, and, having 
granted them their freedom, sent them away to the Lord 
of Antioch, to whom they were related. He endeavoured 
by this means to conciliate that prince. 



SALA.H ED-DiN next marched to the Iron Bridge,^ where 
he remained several days, and then set out for Derbesak.^ 
It was on Friday, the i8th of the month of Rejeb (Sep- 
tember 12, 1 188), that he arrived before that fortress, 
which lies close to Antioch. He attacked it stoutly with 
his mangonels, keeping up a very strict blockade. He 
undermined one of the towers with such success that it 
gave way. The besieged stationed men at the breach 
to prevent an entrance, and their warriors stood in the 
gap itself to hinder our men from gaining that position. 
I saw them myself, and noticed that every time one of 
them was killed another stepped forward and took his place. 
They stood as motionless as the wall itself, with absolutely 
no protection. Seeing full well the extremity to which 
they were reduced, they asked permission to capitulate, 

^ Jisr el-Hadid^ 'the iron bridge' over the Orontes E. of Antioch. 

2 Derbesdk was a village with springs and gardens and a lofty castle. 
It lay on the W. side of the Valley of the Kara Su or Nahr el-Aswad^ 
and a little to the N. of the eastern entrance to the Beilin Pass over 
Wit Giaour Ddgh.—^ . 


and obtained leave to retire to Antioch. One of the 
conditions of the treaty was that they should carry nothing 
with them when they left the fortress, excepting the 
clothes they wore. The Moslem standard was set up on 
the castle on the 22nd of Rejeb. On the following day 
the Sultan departed, having given the place (as a fief) 
to Suleiman Ibn Jender. 



Baghras/ a strong castle lying nearer to Antioch than 
Derbesak, was well provisioned and garrisoned by a large 
force. The army encamped in the neighbouring plain, 
and several detachments of light-armed soldiers were sent 
forward to invest the place. We were at the same time 
obliged to detach an advanced guard in the direction of 
Antioch to protect us against an attack, lest the people 
of that city should fall upon us unawares. This detach- 
ment was pushed so close to the gates of Antioch that 
nothing could leave the city without its knowledge. 1 
had gone with them, and remained several days to see 
the city and visit the tomb of Habib en Nejj^r, a holy 
man who lies buried there. Baghras was subjected to 
such a smart attack that the garrison surrendered, with 
the permission of the government of Antioch, and on 
the 2nd of Sh'aban (September 26) the Moslem banner 
floated from the turrets. The evening of the same day 

^ Baghrds (ancient Pagrae) was a fortress of great importance, as 
it lay about half-way between Antioch and Alexandretta {Skanderiin\ 
and commanded the entrance to the Beilan Pass. The ruins of the 
casile are still called KaVat Baghrds.— V^. 


the Sultan returned to camp, and there he received a 
message from the people of Antioch asking for peace. 
The Sultan, taking into consideration the fatigues and 
hardships that the army had undergone, and being worried 
by the reiterated demands of 'Imad ed-Din, Lord of 
Sinjar, who persisted in his desire to return home, con- 
cluded a treaty of peace with Antioch — in which the 
other cities occupied by the Franks were not included — 
on condition that the Moslems kept prisoner in that 
city were set at liberty. This peace was to last seven 
months, and at the end of that time the city was to be 
delivered into the Sultan's hands unless it had in the 
meantime received assistance from outside. The Sultan 
then departed for Damascus, and at the request of his 
son, el-Melek ez-Zaher, took Aleppo on his way, arriv- 
ing there on the nth of Sh'aban. He lodged in the 
castle for three days, and his son entertained him with 
the greatest magnificence. Every soldier received some 
present at the hands of the young prince, who was so 
liberal, that to spare his revenues the Sultan left for 
Damascus. His nephew, el-Melek el-Mozafifer Taki ed- 
Din, came out to meet him, and conducted him to the 
castle of Hamah, where a magnificent repast was set before 
him, and he listened to the Sufis who were presented to him. 
The Sultan remained one night there, and gave the cities 
of Jebela and Laodicea to his host. Then he resumed 
his journey, taking the road that runs through B'albek, 
and halting for a day in the plain near that city. There 
he took a bath, after which he departed for Damascus, 
and reached that city a few days before the beginning 
of the month of Ramadan. He did not think it right 
(in this month set apart for fasting) to neglect the duty 
of fighting the infidels; he considered he was bound to 
do this whenever he could, and, above all, since there still 


remained several fortresses untaken near the Haur^n, which 
threatened that district. Among these were Safed and 
Kaukab. Therefore, although he was observing the fast, 
he thought it necessary to turn his attention to those two 
places, and to get possession of them. 



On one of the early days of the month of Ramadan (end 
of October), the Sultan set out from Damascus on his way 
to Safed.^ He was not deterred by the thought that he 
was leaving his family, his children, and his home during a 
month when everyone, no matter where he may be, is 
anxious to return to the bosom of his family, and for that 
purpose will even undertake a long journey. It is true that 
the Sultan submitted to this privation in order to obtain a 
glorious reward, — Thy favour (oh, God !). Safed is a very 
inaccessible fortress, the ground all round being broken up 
by (deep) ravines. The army invested the place, and 
placed its mangonels in position. This was in the month 
of Ramadan ; rain was falling in torrents, and the ground 
became a swamp ; but this did not affect the Sultan's 
determination. As I was then on duty, I spent a night in 
his tent. He had just been marking out the positions on 
which five mangonels were to be erected, and he said : * I 
shall not go to sleep until all have been set up.' He had 
allotted a certain number of workmen to each mangonel, 
and his messengers went backwards and forwards con- 
tinuously to see what they were doing, and report their 

» See p. 31. 


progress to the Sultan. This went on until daybreak. By 
that time the work was finished, and nothing remained 
but to fix the khanzirs^ to the mangonels. I took this 
opportunity of quoting to him the well-known tradition 
recorded in genuine collections, saying that the promise of 
this tradition would be fulfilled in his case. The text 
runs : T/ie Holy Prophet said: There are two eyes that the 
fire of hell will 7iever touch : the eye that has kept watch in 
the service of Godj and the eye that has wept in fear of Him. 
The attack on Safed was maintained without interruption 
until the place surrendered. The capitulation took place 
on the 14th of Shawal (December 6, 1188). During the 
course of the month of Ramadan the Sultan obtained 
possession of el-Kerak, the officers in command surrender- 
ing the fortress in order that their lord^ might be set at 
liberty. He had been taken captive at Hattin. 



The Sultan then marched towards Kaukab, encamped on 
the mountain plateau, and surrounded the fortress with 
light-armed troops. He pressed so close to the place that 
the arrows and bolts of the besieged passed over the 
spot he occupied. The wall built of stones and clay 
afforded perfect protection to those behind it ; so that no 
one could appear at the entrance of his tent without putting 
on his armour. Rain fell without ceasing, and the mud 
was so thick that it was almost impossible to get about 
either on foot or on horseback. We suffered terribly from 

^ See note, p. 31. 2 Humphrey IV. of Toron. 


the violence of the wind and the heaviness of the rain, as 
well as from the proximity of the enemy, who from their 
position necessarily commanded our camp, killing and 
wounding a great number of our men. The Sultan being 
determined to accomplish the taking of the castle, so con- 
ducted his operations as to enable the miners to effect 
a breach in the wall. The enemy — may their hopes be 
ever confounded ! — saw that they would be taken, and 
asked for terms. The Sultan granted them the favour they 
begged, and took possession of the place on the 15th of 
Zu el-K'ada (January 5, 1189). The baggage, which had 
been on the plateau, was transported, on account of the 
mud and the wind, into the Ghor.^ During the remainder 
of this month his brother, el-Melek el-'Adel, had several 
interviews with him on private matters. At the beginning 
of the month of Zu el-Hijja (January 21, 1189) he dis- 
missed the troops he had called together, and set out for 
Jerusalem with his brother that he might bid el-Melek 
farewell, and visit the Holy Places in that city. His 
brother was to start from that place on his return to 
Egypt. They arrived at Jerusalem on Friday, the 8th of 
Zu el-Hijja, and were present at public prayer in the Dome 
of the glorious Rock (Kubbet es Sakhrat esh Sherifa). On 
the day of the great feast,^ which was a Sunday, they 
worshipped there again. On the nth of this month the 
Sultan left for Ascalon, to look into the condition of that 
city, and he spent several days there re-establishing 
order in every department, and arranging everything on 
a satisfactory basis. He then set out for Acre, taking 
the road through the coast lands, with the view of 
inspecting the cities he should pass through, and rein- 
forcing them with men and supplies. He arrived at Acre, 

' The Valley of the Jordan. 

2 The 'idu el-Azha, ' the Feast of Sacrifice,' is celebrated on the 
tenth day of Zu el-Hijja. 


and spent the greater part of the month of Moharrem of 
the year 585 (February-March, 1 189) in that city. He left 
Beha ed-Din Karakush^ as governor there, charging him to 
repair the fortifications, and to give unremitting attention 
to that business. He left Hossam ed-Din Bishara with 
him. Then, having set out for Damascus, he entered that 
city on the ist of Safer in the year 585 (March 21, 11 89). 



The Sultan remained in Damascus till the month Rabi'a I. 
(April 19, II 89), when he received a message from Khalif 
en-Nasr li-Din Illah, who had appointed his son to succeed 
him, and therefore sent an injunction, commanding that 
his name should be inserted in the khotba. The Sultan 
carried out this order, and then determined to march 
against Shakif Arnun, a very strong fortress in the neigh- 
bourhood of Banias. He left Damascus on the 3rd of the 
aforesaid month, and came to a halt in the meadow (merj) 
of Felus {or Kalus). On Saturday morning he set out 
from thence and marched to the meadow of Berghuth,^ 
where he remained until the nth of the month to await 
his troops. Detachments arrived one after another. He 

^ Beha ed-Din Karakush, a eunuch, was a freedman of Shirkuh, on 
whose death he assisted 'Aisa (p. 173) to make Salah ed-Din vizir. 
Saiah ed-Din made him his lieutenant in Egypt, and he built the 
citadel, and the walls enclosing old and new Cairo (Ibn Khallikan, 
ii. 520).— W. 

2 MerJ el-Fehis, ' meadow of coin ' ; Merj el-Berghuth^ ' meadow of 
the flea,' places on the S. of Mount Hermon. 


then set out for Banias, from which place he marched to 
the Merj 'Ayun ; he arrived and pitched his camp there on 
the 17th. This plain lies so close to Shakif-Arnun^ that 
the Sultan used to ride out with us every day to inspect it. 
Meanwhile reinforcements and supplies arrived in the camp 
from all sides. The Lord of Shakif,^ knowing that these 
preparations certainly betokened his ruin, decided to come 
to an arrangement with the Sultan which would relieve him 
from danger. He came down from his fortress and pre- 
sented himself at the entrance to the Sultan's tent before 
we had heard of his arrival. The Sultan had him admitted 
and received him with great respect and with every mark 
of honour. This man held high rank amongst the Franks, 
and was distinguished for his keen intellect. He knew 
Arabic, and was able to speak it ; he also possessed some 
knowledge of history. I had heard that he had a Moslem 
in his suite, whose duty it w^as to read to him and expound. 
His manners were truly charming. He presented himself 
before the Sultan, ate with him, and then, in a private 
interview, declared that he was his servant (memliik), and 
that he would surrender the place to him without giving 
him the trouble to fight. As a condition, he stipulated 
that an asylum should be provided for him at Damascus, 
for he could no longer dwell amongst the Franks, and that 
a certain income should be granted him in the same city 
as a provision for himself and his family. He added that 
he would wish to be permitted to remain where he was, 
and that in the course of three months, beginning from the 
day on which he was speaking, he would present himself 
in due course and wait upon the Sultan ; he needed this 

^ Shakif Arnu7i^ a strong Templar fortress built before 1179 (Bel- 
fort ; see Burchard, p. 13) on the N. bank of the Leontes, \o\ miles 
N.W. of Banias. Merj ^ Ayun is the open valley to its E. 

2 Renaud of Sidon. 


time to remove his family and dependents from Tyre. 
The Sultan consented to all his proposals, and from that 
time received frequent visits from him. He argued with 
us on the subject of our religion, and we reasoned with 
him in order to show him the vanity of his beliefs. He 
talked very well, and expressed himself with great modera- 
tion and courtesy. 

In the month Rabi'a I. (April -May) we received 
tidings of the capture of esh-Shobek. This place had 
been blockaded for a whole year by a strong body of 
troops sent thither by the Sultan, and the garrison capitu- 
lated when all their provisions were expended. 




The Sultan had promised to set the king (of Jerusalem) 
at liberty on his ceding Ascalon to him, and as the 
king had caused his officers to surrender this place and 
demanded to be released, the Sultan suffered him to 
depart from Antarsus,i where he had been kept prisoner. 
At that time we were encamped near the castle of the 
Kurds. Amongst the conditions he imposed upon the 
king, was that he should never again draw sword against 
him, and should always consider himself the servant 
(memluk) and bondsman of his liberator. The king — 
God curse him ! — broke his word, and collected a body 
of troops, with which he marched to Tyre. As he was 
unable to gain admittance into this city, he encamped 

^ Antaradus, Tortosa, the modern Tarhis. 


outside the walls, and entered into negotiations with the 
marquis (of Montferrat),^ who happened to be there at the 
time. The marquis — a man accurst of God — was an im- 
portant personage, distinguished by his good judgment, 
the energy and decision of his character and his religious 
zeal. He replied to the king : ' I am only the lieutenant 
of the kings beyond the seas, and they have not authorized 
me to give the city up to you.' After prolonged nego- 
tiations an arrangement was made to form an alliance 
against the Moslems, and with the object of uniting the 
troops of Tyre with those of the other cities occupied by 
the Franks. The king's army was to remain outside the 
gate of Tyre. 



On Monday, the 17th of Jornada I. in the aforesaid year 
(July 3, Ii89),the Sultan received news from the advanced 
guard that the Franks bad just crossed the bridge which 
lies on the boundary between the territories of Tyre and 
Sidon.2 It was in the territory of this latter place that we 
found them. The Sultan mounted his steed, and the 
jawush^ called (to arms). The cavalry mounted so as 

^ Conrad, of Montferrat, married Isabel, half-sister of Sibyl, wife of 
King Guy, who became heiress, in 1189, of the kingdom of Jerusalem, 
and Conrad was declared king in 1192, but assassinated at Tyre on 
April 28 of that year. The English chroniclers speak badly of him, as 
he opposed the policy of King Richard I. See pp. 303, 317. 

* The bridge over the Kasimiyeh or Leontes river between Tyre 
and Sidon. 

3 This seems to be the Turkish Chaush^ a term now used for a 
sergeant or non-commissioned officer. 


to join the advanced guard, but when they got up, the 
affair was at an end. This is what had taken place. 
When a numerous body of the Franks had crossed the 
bridge, the Moslem advanced guard rushed upon them 
and assailed them vigorously, killing a great number, 
wounding twice as many, and driving others into the 
stream, where they were drowned. Thus did God come 
to the assistance of Islam and the Moslems. None of the 
latter were killed, excepting one of the Sultan's memluks 
called Aibek el-Akhresh, who had the good fortune to 
receive a martyr's death. He was very brave and daring, 
and an experienced soldier. His horse was killed under 
him, and he then set his back against a rock, and fought until 
his quiver was empty ; then he defended himself with his 
sword, and killed several of the enemy; but he succumbed 
at last, overwhelmed by numbers. The Sultan was much 
grieved by the loss of so brave a servant. After this he 
set out once more with an escort of light cavalry, and 
repaired to the camp which had been pitched by his orders 
close to this place. 



The Sultan remained in this camp, and on the 19th (of 
Jomada I.) he rode out to inspect the enemy's position 
according to his custom. A number of footmen, volunteers, 
and servants followed his escort, and, in spite of his express 
orders and the blows he commanded to be given them, 
they refused to return. He feared lest something should 
happen to them, because the place for which they were 



making was very difficult to cross, and afforded no pro- 
tection whatever for men on foot. These men rushed 
towards the bridge and discharged arrows at the enemy, 
whilst a number of them crossed over it. Then followed a 
furious struggle, for a company of the Franks had surrounded 
them before they perceived their position. The enemy, 
feeling sure there was no ambuscade to be feared behind 
this venturesome body, charged them like one man, without 
the Sultan's knowledge. He was far from the scene of the 
combat, and had no army with him, for he had not gone 
out that day with troops in battle array ; he had only 
ridden forth to reconnoitre, as was his daily custom. 
Seeing by a cloud of dust that a fight was going forward, 
he sent the troops he had with him to bring back those 
rash men. This detachment saw that the action had 
become very serious, and that, as the Franks were now 
superior in numbers, they had everything to apprehend. 
The enemy gained a complete victory over these footmen, 
and a fierce combat then took place between them and the 
detachment. A number of foot soldiers were killed, and 
others taken prisoner. The number of those who found 
martyrdom on the field of battle was altogether one hundred 
and eighty. The Franks on their side had many killed and 
drowned. Amongst their dead was the leader of the 
Germans, an important personage with them. In the 
number of the Moslem martyrs, whose names could be 
ascertained, was Ibn el-Bessaru, a fine young fellow of 
great courage. His father, reckoning him for God's cause, 
shed not a single tear. So I have been told by several 
who were there. Of all the battles at which I was pre- 
sent, there was none in which the Franks obtained more 
advantage. Never had they killed so many Moslems, nor 
in so short a time. 




The Sultan, after this extraordinary blow had fallen upon 
the Moslems, called his emirs together, and consulted them 
on the subject. It was decided that they should cross the 
bridge and throw themselves upon the Franks, and should 
not cease the slaughter until they were all exterminated. 
The enemy had just left Tyre and taken up their position 
close to the bridge, which lies a little more than a parasang 
(to the north) of that city. The Sultan, having determined 
to attack them, mounted his horse on the morning of 
Thursday, the 17th of Jomada I.,^ and set forth, followed 
by his troops, and also by volunteers, and all the camp 
followers. When the force in rear came up, it met the 
advanced guard in front returning with their tents. When 
these men were questioned as to why they had left their 
position, they replied that the Franks had withdrawn to 
Tyre, either to seek protection within the walls of that 
city, or to intrench themselves in the neighbouring plain. 
'When we heard this,' said they, 'we turned back, for we 
knew that an advanced guard was no longer necessary 
there.' When the Sultan received this news, he determined 
to go to Acre to inspect those portions of the fortifications 
which he had ordered to be rebuilt, and to hasten the com- 
pletion of that undertaking. On his arrival at Acre he 
re-established order, and commanded that the ramparts 
should be repaired in the most solid fashion. Then, having 

^ This date does not agree with the one last given. Our author 
probably intended to write the 27th. 

10 — 2 


charged the garrison to use the utmost vigilance, and keep 
the strictest watch, he returned to the army, which had mean- 
while remained encamped in the Merj 'Ayun, and there he 
awaited the expiration of the time he had granted to the 
Lord of esh-Shakif— that man accurst of God. 



On Saturday, the 6th of Jomada II. (July 22, 1189), the 
Sultan received information that a detachment of foot- 
soldiers from the enemy's army had become bolder, and 
was going to the hill of Tibnin to cut firewood. As the 
disaster which the Moslem infantry had lately sustained 
was still on his mind, he determined to lay an ambush into 
which he hoped these Franks would fall. He knew that a 
body of knights was coming out behind this detachment 
to protect them, and he laid a snare to catch them both. 
He commanded the garrison at Tibnin to send out a 
small body of troops to attack the footmen, and retire 
to a place he pointed out as soon as they saw the 
enemy's cavalry coming down upon them. This was 
to take place on the morning of Monday, the 8th of 
Jomada II. He also commanded the garrison at Acre 
to pursue the enemy, and raid their camp, if they should 
turn out to succour their comrades. Very early on Mon- 
day he rode out with his bodyguard, all lightly armed, 
without either baggage or tents, and repaired to the spot 
he had pointed out to the people of Tibnin as that to 
which they were to direct their flight. He continued his 
march until he had passed Tibnin, and then divided his 


troops into eight sections, taking from each of these 
sections about twenty horsemen well mounted and of 
tried valour. He ordered this picked body to show them- 
selves to the enemy so as to attract their attention, then 
to discharge a few arrows among them, and to flee pre- 
cipitately towards his place of ambush. They did so, and 
they saw before them almost all the forces of the Franks. 
For they had received information of what was going 
forward, and had marched out, and were advancing in 
order of battle under their king. A terrible fight ensued 
between this army and the Moslem detachment, which, too 
proud to retreat before the Franks, was urged by a feeling 
of honour to disobey the Sultan's commands, and to close 
with the body of the enemy, in spite of their own small 
numbers. The fight raged till the close of the day ; it was 
Monday, and not one of the Moslems returned to the camp 
with tidings of what had occurred. The Sultan did not 
hear of the encounter until it was almost ended, and, as 
night was at hand, he sent out a few detachments, know- 
ing that it was too late for a pitched battle, and that 
the opportunity for surprising the enemy had gone by. 
The Franks, when they saw the first reinforcements appear, 
were seized with terror, and retreated. Both sides had 
fought furiously. I learnt from one of those who was 
present (for I myself was not there) that the Franks had 
more than ten men killed, and the Moslems six, two of 
whom belonged to the advanced guard, and four to the 
Arab auxiliaries. One of the latter was the emir Zamel, 
a fine young fellow of good character, and chief of his 
tribe. His horse being killed under him, his cousin gave 
him his, and this likewise was killed. He was made 
prisoner, with three of his kinsmen. When the Franks 
saw the Moslem reinforcements arrive, they killed their 
prisoners, lest they should be carried off. There were a 


great number of wounded on both sides, both men and 
horses. A very singular thing happened in this encounter : 
one of the Sultan's memluks was riddled with wounds, 
and fell amongst the dead, where he remained all night, 
drenched in his own blood. On Tuesday morning his 
comrades noticed that he was missing, and, as they could 
not find him, they informed the Sultan. He gave orders 
for a fresh search to be made, and he was found lying 
among the heap of the slain in the state we have described. 
He was carried into the camp, and so well nursed that 
God restored him to health. On Wednesday, the 4th of 
the month, the Sultan returned to camp. 



After this a report spread through the army that the 
Lord of esh-Shakif had asked for a delay only to deceive 
us, and was not acting uprightly. Several things showed 
that he was only seeking to gain time, such was his eager- 
ness to procure supplies for his castle and to strengthen 
the gates. The Sultan thought it necessary to take up a 
position on the mountain plateau that he might observe 
the place more closely, and prevent the introduction of any 
succours or provisions. He gave out as a pretext that he 
was anxious to escape the great heat which then prevailed, 
and the unhealthy air of the Merj. It was the 12th of 
that month, and at the beginning of the second quarter of 
the (preceding) night, he went up to the mountain, and 
scarcely had day dawned when the Lord of esh-Shakif 
perceived the Moslem camp pitched quite close at hand. 


A portion of the army remained in the Merj as before. 
Seeing the troops so near him, and knowing that the 
respite which had been granted him would expire towards 
the end of Jomada II. — that is to say, within a few days — 
he flattered himself that if he visited the Sultan he could 
cajole him into allowing a prolongation of the time. He 
imagined, from what he had seen of the Sultan's character 
and of his courtesy, that this favour would be granted 
him. He therefore went to pay his respects, and offered 
to give up the place, adding that the fatal day would soon 
arrive, and that it was a matter of indifference to him 
whether the Sultan should be put in possession to-day or 
to-morrow. He also pretended that several of the mem- 
bers of his family had not yet left Tyre, and that they 
would do so in a few days. He spent the day in the 
Sultan's presence and returned to the castle towards night- 
fall. The Sultan did not let him see what he felt, but 
received him just as before, for he was anxious to fulfil the 
obligation which the respite imposed upon him. A few 
days afterwards, when the term was just at an end, the 
Christian came down once more from his castle, and, having 
been granted a private interview with the Sultan, asked 
him to prolong the respite for a further period of nine 
months, in order to make it a complete year. The Sultan 
knew by this that the man meant to deceive him, but, 
fearing to provoke him by a refusal, he postponed giving 
an answer until another day. * We will reflect on the 
matter,' he said ; ' v/e will take the advice of our council, 
and let you know our decision.' He then ordered a tent to 
be pitched for him by the side of his own, and, whilst he 
continued to treat him with the greatest honour, he had this 
tent watched quite unknown to its occupant. Discussions 
on this subject and messages between the parties occupied 
all the time until the expiration of the respite. The Sultan 


then demanded the surrender of the place, saying to him 
openly : ' You always meant to deceive us ; you have re- 
paired your fortress and introduced fresh supplies.' The 
other denied the fact, and then arranged with the Sultan 
that each of them should appoint a trustworthy person, 
and that the two agents should repair to the castle to 
receive its surrender and ascertain on the spot whether it 
had lately been repaired or not. When they presented them- 
selves before the fortress, the garrison refused to comply with 
their demand, and the envoys remarked that the gate in the 
walls had lately been repaired. Orders were forthwith issued 
for a strict guard to be kept over the (chief deceiver), and 
he was now openly watched, and forbidden to enter the 
Sultan's presence. He was informed : * The term of the 
respite is at an end ; you must absolutely deliver up the 
place.' Once more he tried to play upon their credulity, 
and could not be made to give a definite answer ; then he 
sent his confidential servant with a message to the people 
in the castle, charging them to surrender the place. But 
they declared most resolutely that they would not obey. 
* We are the Master's servants,' they said, ' and not yours.'^ 
A guard was then placed upon the castle to prevent any- 
one going in or coming forth. On the i8th of Jomada II. 
the Christian acknowledged that the respite had expired, 
and said that he would go himself to the castle and see 
that it was delivered up. He mounted his mule and set 
out with several of our officers. On his arrival at esh- 
Shakif he commanded his people to surrender the place, 
but they refused to do so. A priest then came out and 
conversed with him in their language, after which he 
returned into the castle, and from that moment those who 
were within maintained a still stouter resistance. It was 

^ The defenders meant the Master of the Templars. The Knights 
were forbidden ever to retreat without superior orders. 


thought that the chief had charged the priest to encourage 
them in their refusal. He spent the remainder of the day 
in sending messages to the people in the castle, and, as 
they paid no manner of heed, he was brought back to the 
camp. That same night he was sent to the castle of 
Banias,^ there to be kept a prisoner. The army surrounded 
esh-Shakif, and effectually blockaded it. The lord of the 
castle remained at Banias until the 6th of Rejeb. The 
Sultan was very wroth with this man, who had caused him 
and his whole army to waste three months, during which 
time they had done nothing at all. The prisoner was 
brought back to the camp, and on the night of his return 
terrible threats were used to make him yield, but with- 
out effect. On the following day, the 8th of Rejeb, 
the Sultan had his tents carried up to the plateau, and 
ordered them to be pitched on a spot ft-om which he could 
command the castle better than from the position he had 
just left, and which was also still further raised above 
the exhalations of the plain, that were already beginning 
to affect his health. After these things had taken place, 
we were informed that the Franks of Tyre, together with 
those in the army of the king, were marching towards 
en-Newakir on their way to Acre. We also heard that a 
body of Franks had disembarked at Iskanderuna,'^ and 
established themselves there, after losing a few men in a 
skirmish with the Moslem infantry. 

^ The castle {^KaVat es-Subeibeh) on the hill E. of Banias, taken by 
Nur ed-Din from the Franks in 1164. 

2 Iskandericna is 8 miles S. of Tyre, the older Alexandroschene, and 
Scandalion of the Franks. Efi-Nawdkir (plural of en-Nakurah, ' the 
cutting') is the Ladder of Tyre, 6 miles S. of the preceding, and 12 
miles N. of Acre. 




When the Sultan heard that the Franks were marching 
upon Acre/ he felt the greatest anxiety ; but he did not 
think it expedient to hasten his departure, for this 
manoeuvre was in all probability only a feint to induce 
him to remove from esh-Shakif He therefore remained 
where he was, awaiting the course of events. On the 
evening of the I2th of Rejeb (August 26, 1189), a courier 
came in with the tidings that the Franks were on the 
march, and had just halted at 'Ain Bassa, whilst they had 
thrown their advanced guard forward as far as ez-Zib.^ 
This news appeared to him so serious that he wrote to all 
the neighbouring governors, commanding them to come 
with their troops to the place where his army was en- 
camped. And he despatched other letters to them almost 
immediately, even more urgent than the first, and ordered 
that the baggage should start that very night. By the 
morning of the next day, the 13th of Rejeb, he was on his 
way to Acre, taking the road through Tiberias,^ because 
there was no other in that district practicable for an army. 
He ordered a small detachment, however, to take the 
Tibnin road, that they might watch the enemy's move- 
ments more closely, and send him information at regular 

^ This force was the army of King Guy, aided by the ships sent by 
King William of Sicily, the former marching from Tyre, the latter 
landing at ScandaHon. 

2 'Am Bassa, the spring S. of el-Bassah (Basse Poulaine of the 
Franks), 12 miles N. of Acre, 2 miles from the sea. Ez-Zib (Achzib, 
or Ecdippa), 10 miles N. of Acre on the shore. 

3 Saldh ed-Din marched down the Jordan Valley from Belfort. 


intervals. We marched as far as el-Hula,^ where we 
arrived at mid-day ; there we halted an hour, and set out 
again, marching all through the night. On the following 
morning, the 14th of the month, we reached a place called 
Minya.2 There we heard that the Franks had taken up 
their position before Acre on Monday, the 13th (August 27). 
The Sultan sent the Lord of esh-Shakif to Damascus, after 
upbraiding him most bitterly for his perfidy. He then set 
out for the plain of Seffuria, attended by a small escort, to 
meet the detachment that had been sent round by way of 
Tibnin with orders to await him there.^ He had given 
instructions that the baggage also was to meet him at that 
place. He continued to push forward until, at el-Khar- 
ruba,^ he could overlook the enemy. He then sent a 
detachment forward to Acre, which succeeded in getting 
into the city without the knowledge of the enemy. He 
kept on sending detachments, one after another, until the 
city was filled with men and provisions of all kinds. Then 
he drew up his army in order of battle, by right wing, left 
wing, and centre, and set out for el-Kharruba, which he 
reached on the 15th. He proceeded thence to Tell Kisan,^ 
which lies at the entrance to the plain of Acre, and here 
his troops encamped in their appointed order. The ex- 
treme left of the left flank rested on the bank of the Nahr 
el-Halu,^ whilst the extreme right of the right flank was 
encamped close to the hill (/^//) of el-'Aiadiya.^ The 

^ The HiVeh lake, or Waters of Merom. 

2 Khd7t Minyeh^ on the N.W. shore of the Sea of Galilee, on the 
road to Tiberias. 

3 The road from Tibnhi (Toron) over the mountains to Seffurieh 
led probably along the watershed to Safed, and thence S.W. 

4 El-Kharriiba^ see p. 28. 

5 Tell Khan lies 5^ miles S.E. of Acre. 

^' Nahr el- Hal u^ 'sweet river,' is the Belus flowing to the sea S. of 

7 El-' Aiyadiyeh is 5 miles E. of Acre, N. of the Belus. 


Moslem army surrounded the enemy, and occupied all the 
roads that led to their camp. Their numbers were in- 
creased by the continual arrival of fresh reinforcements. 
An advanced guard was always stationed close up to the 
enemy, and the marksmen harassed them by maintaining 
a constant discharge. The Franks were blockaded in the 
camp on every side, so that no one could come forth with- 
out being killed or wounded. They were encamped on 
one side of Acre, and the king's tent was pitched on Tell 
el-Mosalliyin^ (* the hill of those who pray '), a hill which 
rises close to the gate of the city. They had two thousand 
horsemen, and thirty thousand footmen.^ I have never 
met anyone who estimated their numbers at less than this, 
whilst many, on the other hand, held they were still 
stronger, and they constantly received reinforcements by 
sea. Skirmishes occurred very frequently between their 
army and our advanced guard, and were obstinately dis- 
puted. The Moslems were most anxious to push on and 
attack the enemy, but the Sultan kept them in hand. 
Contingents from the different Moslem provinces kept on 
arriving, as well as princes and emirs from the different 
districts. The first to appear was Mozaffer ed-Din, the 
great emir, son of Zein ed-Din, and after him came el- 
Melek el-Mozaffer, Lord of Hamah. This was the position 
of affairs when Hossam ed-Din Sonkor el-Akhlati died of 
a flux. His loss was a source of great grief to the Moslems, 
for he was distinguished both for his bravery and his piety. 
The numbers of the Franks kept on increasing, until at 

^ 7>// el-Mosalliyiny now called Tell el-Fokhkhdr^ a large sandy 
hillock a mile E. of Acre. 

2 Jeoffrey de Vinsauf (1. xxv.) makes King Guy's army number 
9,000 men, with 50 Pisan galleys. The Danes and Frisons who joined 
him numbered 12,000. An English and Flemish fleet arriving in 
October, 1190, increased this force before the arrival of the French 
and English armies. 


last they were sufficiently strong to blockade the city, 
and prevent anyone from going in or coming out. The 
investment of Acre was completed on Thursday, the last 
day of the month of Rejeb. The Sultan recognised the 
gravity of the situation, and grew anxious ; he endeavoured 
to devise a means of breaking a way through them, in 
order to introduce supplies and reinforcements into the 
besieged city. He summoned his emirs and councillors of 
State to consider his plan, which was to close up round 
the enemy and hem them in. It was resolved at the 
council to attack the Franks with all our strength and to 
overwhelm them, in order to effect a passage. On the 
morning of Friday, the ist of the month of Sh'aban, 585 
(September 14, 1189), he began to move his army, which 
marched in order of battle, by right wing, left wing, and 
centre, and when they came to close quarters with the 
enemy, they rushed on them furiously. The attack was 
commenced after the hour of Friday's prayer, in order that 
we might benefit by the supplications of the preachers 
from their pulpits. Several terrible charges were made, 
and the battle raged, with many vicissitudes of fortune, 
until night closed in and separated the combatants. Both 
sides spent the night under arms, as each army expected 
to be attacked by the other. 



During the morning of Saturday the troops were held in 
readiness to fight, and the Sultan sent a detachment of 
picked men towards the shore on the north side of the 
city. The enemy's camp did not extend as far as that, 


but the unoccupied space was held by platoons of light 
cavalry. Our soldiers charged and routed them, and killed 
a great number. Those who escaped death fled to their 
camp, and the Moslems pursued them right up to the 
entrance. Thus a passage was opened to the city, and 
its walls were freed from the enemy from the tower gate 
called Kal'at el-Melek^ as far as the gate rebuilt by Kara- 
kush, which bears his name. Now that the road was 
thrown open, provision merchants went in with their wares, 
and a single man or woman could pass in safety ; for the 
Moslem advanced guard was posted between the road and 
the enemy's camp, completely blockading the latter. This 
same day the Sultan went into Acre and walked on the 
wall, from whence he could see the enemy's camp pitched 
at the foot of the ramparts. The Moslems gave them- 
selves up to rejoicing, seeing that God had come to their 
aid. The garrison, led by the Sultan, made a sortie, and 
the Franks were thus surrounded by the Moslems on every 
side. This manoeuvre was executed after the noon-day 
prayer. Then the Moslems ceased fighting, that they 
might water their horses and take a little rest ; permission 
to desist had been granted them on condition that they 
should return to the fight directly they had refreshed 
themselves a little. However, as there was but a short 
time before them, and they were worn out with fatigue, 
they did not return to their posts that day, and lay down 
thinking that on the morrow, Sunday, they would attack 
the enemy in such a way as would bring on a general 
action. The Franks, on their side, remained in the shelter 

^ KaPat el-Melek^ ' King's Castle.' On Marino Sanuto's map of 
Acre the 'King's New Tower' is immediately west of the 'Cursed 
Tower,' which was at the N.E. angle of the old walls. Mount 
Musard, the N. quarter of Acre in the thirteenth century, did not 
exist in Sa'ah ed-Din's time. 


of their camp, and not a single man was to be seen. On 
Sunday morning, the 3rd of Sh'aban (September 16, 1189), 
the army prepared for the fight, and, surrounding the 
enemy, resolved to storm their camp. The emirs and the 
greater part of the men were ordered to dismount, so that 
they might fight the Franks at their very tents. All the 
arrangements had been made, when some of the emirs 
advised that the attack should be postponed until the 
morning of Monday, the 4th of Sh'aban, and that the 
foot soldiers should be thrown into Acre so as to make a 
sortie from the city with the garrison ; then they were to 
attack the enemy in the rear, whilst the Moslems outside 
were to mount and rush from all sides with one accord 
against the camp. The Sultan led the army in person, 
and took an active part in the battle ; wherever the fight 
was keenest he was to the fore. Indeed^ his eagerness and 
anxiety throughout was like that of a- mother robbed of 
her infant. I have been told by one of his body-physicians, 
that from the Friday to the Sunday he ate hardly any- 
thing, his mind was so preoccupied. The plan of attack 
was carried out, but the enemy maintained a stout 
resistance in their camp. The battle raged until Friday 
the 8th of Sh'aban ; it was a market in which everyone 
sold his life to gain a great profit (Paradise) ; it was a sky 
raining down a shower, every drop of which was the head 
of a chief or a leader. 



On the 8th of Sh'aban (September 21, 11 89) the enemy left 
their camp in a body — infantry and cavalry — formed in 


line on the top of the hill, and began to march quite 
quietly, and without the least hurry. They advanced 
within the outer ring formed by their foot soldiers, which 
surrounded them like a wall, and came on until they 
reached the tents of our advanced guard. When the 
Moslems perceived the enemy advancing upoh them, their 
warriors called out to one another, the heavy cavalry pre- 
pared to charge, and the Sultan cried to the Moslem 
soldiers : On for Islam ! The horse soldiers sprang to their 
saddles, the foot soldiers were as eager as the cavalry, the 
young warrior as resolute as the veteran ; they hurled 
themselves like one man on the enemy, and drove them 
backwards. The infidels rallied, and a close sword fight 
ensued ; those who escaped with their lives were wounded ; 
those who were killed were left where they fell ; the 
wounded stumbled over the dead, and each man 
thought only for himself. Those of the enemy who 
escaped from the massacre fled to their camp, and 
would not fight for several days. Indeed, they sought 
only to avoid death, and to keep themselves out of danger. 
Now that the road to Acre was clear, the Moslems went 
to and fro, and I also went into the city. I climbed to the 
top of the wall, as everyone did, and from thence I hurled 
at the enemy the object nearest to my hand. Fighting 
was kept up night and day between the two sides until the 
iith of Sh'aban (September 24). Then, with a view of 
extending the circle in which the Franks were enclosed, 
and thus enticing them out of their camp to a place where 
they might all be massacred, the Sultan ordered the 
baggage to be removed to Tell el-'Aiadiya, a hill opposite 
to Tell el-Mosalliyin, from which watch could be kept both 
over Acre and over the enemy's camp. It was at el-'Aiadiya 
that Hossam ed-Din, one of our chief warriors, died. He 
was buried at the foot of the hill. I delivered the funeral 


prayer over his body, together with several other doctors 
of law. This ceremony took place during the night pre- 
ceding the 15th of Sh'aban. 



We received information that a party had left the enemy's 
camp to forage on the banks of the river. The Sultan 
posted a detachment of Arabs in ambush to surprise them. 
He chose Arabs because they are so swift of movement on 
horseback, and because he trusted them. The detachment 
of Franks had left the camp, and were not expecting any 
attack, when the Arabs fell upon them, killing a great 
number and taking many prisoners. When the soldiers 
brought the heads to the Sultan, he gave them robes of 
honour and rewarded them liberally. This was on the 
i6th of the month. In the evening of the same day a 
furious fight took place between the enemy and the 
garrison, and a great number were killed on both sides. 
Hostilities were kept up for a long time, and not a day 
passed but some were killed, wounded and made captive. 
The soldiers of both sides grew so accustomed to meeting 
that sometimes a Moslem and a Frank would leave off 
fighting in order to have a conversation ; sometimes the 
two parties would mingle together, singing and dancing^ 
so intimate had they become, and afterwards they would 
begin fighting again. One day, wearying of this constant 
warfare, the soldiers of both sides said to one another : 
' How long are the men to fight without allowing the boys 
their share in the pleasure ? Let us arrange a fight between 
two parties of young fellows, the one from your side, the 

1 1 


other from ours.' Boys were fetched from the city to 
contend with the Prankish youths. The two bands fought 
furiously, and one of the young Moslems seized a young 
infidel, raised him in the air, and threw him to the ground, 
making him prisoner. A Frank ransomed the prisoner for 
two gold pieces. ' He is your prisoner,' he said to the 
victor; therefore he took the two gold pieces as his ransom. 
This is a strange occurrence such as very seldom happens. 
A ship arrived laden with horses for the Franks ; one of 
these animals leapt into the sea and swam to the harbour 
of the city, despite their efforts to alter his direction, and 
he fell into the hands of the Moslems. 



On Wednesday, the 21st of the month (October 4, 1189), 
an unusual degree of movement was observed to be taking 
place in the Frank army ; cavalry and infantry, veterans 
and recruits, were drawn up in line outside the camp, 
formed in a centre with right and left flanks. Their king 
was in the centre, and in front of him were borne the 
Gospels, protected under a canopy of satin, held up at the 
four corners by four men. The right wing of the Pranks 
extended the whole length of the Moslem left ; while their 
left, in like manner, was drawn up exactly opposite our 
right. They occupied the ridge of the hills, their right 
resting on the river, their left on the sea. The Sultan 
ordered his heralds to proclaim through the ranks of the 
Moslems : ' O Islam and the army of the servants of the One 
God!' The soldiers sprang to their saddles, determined to 
purchase paradise with their lives, and they remained 


motionless in front of their tents. Their right wing 
stretched to the sea, and their left rested on the river, 
just as with the Frank army.^ The Sultan had made 
his troops encamp in order of battle, the right wing, the 
left, and the centre drawn up separately, so that in case of 
an alarm no manoeuvring would be necessary to form up in 
their appointed places. He himself took up his position in 
the centre ; his son, el-Melek el-Afdal, was in the right 
centre ; and next to him his son, el-Melek ez-Zafer, brother 
of el-Afdal ; then came the Mosul troops under Zaher ed- 
Din Ibn el-Bolenkeri ; then the troops from Diarbekr, 
commanded by Kotb ed-Din, son of Nur ed-Din and Lord 
of Hisn (Keifa) ; next came Hossam ed-Din Ibn Lajin, 
Lord of Nablus ; then Kaimaz en-Nejmi, the Tawashi 
{eunuch), who was stationed at the extreme end of the right 
flank with a great number of men. The other end of the 
right wing, which rested on the sea, included the army of 
el-Melek el-Mozaffer Taki ed-Din and his own personal 
troops. On the left wing, in the part nearest the centre, 
Self ed-Din 'Ali el-Meshtub came first, a great prince and 
chieftain of the Kurdish people ; then Emir Mojelli, with 
the Mehran and Hekkar (Kurdish tribes) contingents ; 
next Mojahed ed-Din Berenkash at the head of the troops 
from Sinjar and a party of memluks ; then Mozaffer ed- 
Din, son of Zein ed-Din, with his personal troops and the 
army under his command. On the extreme left of the left 
wing were the chief officers of Asad's body of memluks 
(formed by Asad ed-Din Shirkuh) — to wit, Seif ed-Din 
Yazkoj, Arslan Bogha, and many another of Asad's old 
warriors, whose bravery has passed into a proverb ; Doctor 

^ The Franks had built earthworks, cutting off Acre from the land 
side, but Salah ed-Din's line of battle is remarkable. As at Hattin, he 
again was almost facing his line of retreat to el-Kharruba. The 
defeat of his left imperilled his right, thrown far W. to the N. of Acre. 

II — 2 


'Aisa and his personal followers were in the centre, which 
was under that chief's command. The Sultan went through 
the ranks in person, spurring his men to the fight, encour- 
aging them to go down to the field of battle, and urging 
them to believe th^t the religion favoured by God would 
gain the victory. The enemy continued to advance and 
the Moslems kfept moving to meet them until the fourth 
hour after sunrise. Then the left wing of the Franks 
rushed on against our right, and el-Melek el-Mozaffer sent 
his vanguard to meet them. Thereupon followed a fight 
with varying fortune, until el-Melek, who occupied the 
extreme right of the right wing on the sea-shore, seeing 
the great number of his opponents, made a backward 
movement ; he hoped by this means to entice them far 
enough from their main army to enable him to give them 
a decisive defeat. The Sultan, seeing this movement, 
thought the prince was unable to maintain his position, 
and sent several battalions from the centre to his support. 
The enemy's left wing then drew back and came to a stand 
on the top of a hill overlooking the sea. When the enemy 
perceived that those battalions had been withdrawn from 
the centre, they took advantage of the consequent weak- 
ness of that part of our line and charged the right flank of 
the centre, both infantry and cavalry rushing on together 
like one man. I myself saw the infantry advancing, keeping 
pace with the knights, who did not outstrip them, and for a 
while were even left behind. The stress of this charge fell 
on the Diarbekr troops, who were unprepared to withstand 
an attack ; therefore they gave way before the enemy and 
fled in confusion. The panic spread until the greater part 
of the right wing retreated in disorder. The Franks 
pursued the fugitives right up to el-'Aiadiya,^ and sur- 
rounded that hill, whilst one body of their soldiers climbed 

^ The Franks thus cut off Salah ed-Din's right. 


up to the Sultan's tent and killed one of his water-carriers 
there. During the day Ism'ail el-Mokabbis, and Ibn Rewaha 
also, won a martyr's death. The left wing maintained its 
position, for the enemy's charge did not affect it. During 
all this time the Sultan was going from battalion to bat- 
talion encouraging the men, promising them magnificent 
rewards, and urging them to continue the fight for God. 
' On !' he cried, ' for Islam !' He had only five of his suite 
left, but he continued to go from battalion to battalion, from 
rank to rank ; then he withdrew to the foot of the hill on 
which his tents were pitched. The fugitives continued 
their flight as far as el-Fakhwana,^ crossing the bridge at 
Tiberias, and some of them went as far as Damascus. 
The enemy's cavalry pursued them as far as el-'Aiadiya ; 
then, seeing that they had reached the top of the hill, they 
left them there and returned to their army. On their way 
they fell in with a band of servants, mule-drivers, and 
grooms, who had taken to flight on the baggage-mules, and 
they killed several of these men ; when they reached the 
entrance to the market-place, they made a further slaughter, 
but suffered considerable loss themselves, for there were a 
great number of men there and all well armed. The 
Franks who had gone up to the Sultan's tents found abso- 
lutely nothing there, but they killed the three mentioned 
above. Then, seeing that the left wing of the Moslem 
army maintained its position, they saw we were not com- 
pletely discomfited, and they came down from the hill to 
rejoin their main army. The Sultan remained at the foot 
of the hill, attended by only a few men, and tried to rally 

1 The bridge S. of the Sea of Galilee {Jisr es Sidd) is intended. 
Fakhwdna appears to be for Kahwdna (by the dots of the Arabic 
being too far apart over the first two letters), namely, the region 
immediately E. of the bridge. This agrees with the flight to Ftk 
(Aphek) on the E. side of the Sea of Galilee. 


his soldiers and hurl them once more against the enemy. 
The men whom he had succeeded in collecting were 
eager to attack the Franks who were coming down from 
the hill ; but the Sultan commanded them to remain 
where they were until the enemy had turned their 
backs upon them on their way to rejoin their main body. 
Then he shouted his war-cry, and his men rushed on 
the band, laying several of them low. The rest of the 
Moslem soldiers, seeing that these men would be an easy 
prey, rushed up in great numbers and pursued them until 
they had regained the main body. When the latter 
saw their fellow -soldiers in flight before a great force 
of Moslems, they imagined that the whole division 
which had charged had been cut to pieces, and that 
none but these fugitives had been able to escape. 
Thinking that they too would be destroyed, they fled on 
all sides, and our left wing pressed down on them ; el- 
Melek el-Mozaffer came up at the same moment with the 
troops that had formed the right wing. Our men assumed 
the offensive once more, coming up from all sides and 
cheering one another on. God rebuked Satan, and caused 
the true faith to triumph. Our warriors did not cease kill- 
ing and cutting down, striking and wounding until those 
fugitives who escaped had reached their main body. The 
Moslems attacked the camp, but were driven back by 
several battalions which had been stationed there for that 
purpose by the enemy, and who now came out to meet 
them. The soldiers were worn out with fatigue and bathed 
in sweat. The hour of the 'Asr prayer^ had just sounded 
when our men drew off and returned to their tents, uttering 
shouts of joy as they marched over the plain, covered with 
dead and drenched with blood. The Sultan returned to 

I * See p. 21. 


his tent and received his officers, who came to report the 
names of their missing comrades. One hundred and fifty- 
unknown youths were stated to have fallen ; among the 
well-known warriors who earned a martyr's death was 
Zaher ed-Din, brother of Doctor 'Aisa. I watched the 
doctor whilst he was receiving the condolences of his 
friends ; he heard them with a smile, saying he did not 
need them. ' To-day,' said he, ' is a day of rejoicing and 
not of mourning.' Zaher ed-Din had fallen from his horse ; 
those who were near him had placed him in his saddle 
again, and several of his relations lost their lives in de- 
fending him. Emir Mojelli also met his death that day. 
These were the Moslems who were killed ; the confounded 
enemy's loss, on the other hand, was estimated at seven 
thousand men ; but I saw them carrying the bodies down 
to throw them into the river, and I do not think the 
number could have been so great. At the time the 
Moslems were fleeing in confusion the servants, who had 
been left in the camp, seeing the tents were abandoned and 
that there was no one to hinder them, began to rifle and 
pillage. It was left, indeed, quite unprotected, one division 
of the army having fled, and the other being fully occupied 
in fighting. Therefore the servants, thinking the army had 
been utterly defeated and that the enemy would seize what- 
ever was in the camp, laid hands on all they could find, 
and carried off great stores of money, clothes and arms. 
This was a much greater disaster than defeat. As soon as 
the Sultan returned to camp and saw the consequences 
of the panic and the pillage, he took prompt measures to 
remedy this misfortune. He first of all wrote letters and 
sent men out to bring back the fugitives and to pursue the 
deserters. These messengers overtook them at the ascent 
of Fik^ and stopped their flight by shouting, * Back to the 

^ jFi^ (Aphek), see note, p. 165. 


charge ! To the rescue of the Moslems !' and they suc- 
ceeded by this means in bringing them back to the camp. 
The Sultan ordered all that they had stolen to be taken 
away from the camp-servants and deposited in front o( 
his tent ; everything was placed there, even down to the 
coverlets and saddle-bags. He then seated himself, whilst 
we formed a circle round him, and invited those who 
could recognise their property to swear to it, and to take 
their goods away. All this while he displayed the greatest 
resolution and good humour, with unruffled serenity and a 
discrimination that was never at fault; his trust in God 
never faltered, nor did he waver in his determination to 
uphold God's religion. The enemy, for their part, returned 
to camp, having lost their bravest men and leaving their 
most valiant chiefs on the field. The Sultan sent a number 
of carts from Acre to take up the bodies of the Franks 
who had fallen, and cast them into the river. I have 
been informed by one of the men who superintended this 
operation that the number of dead belonging to the enemy's 
left wing amounted to four thousand one hundred odd ; but 
he had been unable to reckon the number of dead on the 
right wing and in the centre, because another man had 
been entrusted with the task of carrying these bodies to 
the river. The remnant of the enemy shut themselves up 
in their camp and confined themselves to the defensive, 
paying no heed to the Moslem troops. Numbers had 
taken to flight in the panic ; only those who were known 
by name returned to the camp, because they dreaded 
punishment ; but the others fled straight on. I was 
present when the Sultan had all that was stolen collected 
and returned to the rightful owners ; this was on Friday, 
the 23rd of Sh'aban ; the gathering was like a close- 
thronged market, where justice was the only merchan- 
dize ; never had so great a multitude been collected 


together. When the tumult following on the battle had 
subsided, the Sultan ordered the baggage-train back as far 
as el-Kharruba, fearing that the effluvia from the heaps of 
dead might injure the health of the troops. This place lay 
near to the field of battle, but further off than the ground 
they had been occupying. The Sultan's tent was pitched 
close to the baggage, and he commanded the advanced 
guard to occupy the ground where the camp had stood 
the day before. This was on the 29th of the month. 
On the following day the Sultan summoned his emirs 
and councillors, I being of the number; he commanded 
their attention, and spoke as follows : * In the name of 
God ! Praise be to God ! May the blessing of God rest 
upon His messenger! The enemies of God and of our 
race invaded our land and trampled the soil of Islam 
under their feet ; but already we see a foreshadowing of 
the triumph with which we shall overcome them, if it be 
God's will. There remain but a small number of our 
enemies ; now is the time to utterly exterminate them. I 
take God to witness that that is now our duty. You know 
that the only reinforcements we can expect are those that 
el-Melek el-'Adel is now bringing us. There is the enemy ; 
if we leave them in peace, and they remain there till the 
sea is open for ships, they will receive large reinforcements. 
The opinion I hold, and which seems to me decidedly the 
best, is that we should attack them forthwith, but let each 
of you say what he thinks.' This speech was delivered 
on the 13th Teshrin of the solar year (October 13). The 
council was divided in opinion, and an animated discussion 
ensued ; it was finally determined to withdraw the army as 
far as el-Kharruba. ^ The troops will remain there,' they 
said, ' for several days, to give the men time to recover, 
for they are worn out by the weight of their arms. This 
will enable them to recover their strength and to give their 


horses rest. They have been fifty days under arms and in 
the saddle ; the horses, too, have had their share of fighting 
and are tired out. After they have had a h'ttle rest their 
spirits will revive ; el-Melek en-Nasr will come to our help 
both with advice and by action ; we shall be able to fetch 
back the deserters and collect the foot -soldiers again, to 
lead against the enemy's infantry.' The Sultan at this 
time was suffering from a serious indisposition, brought on 
by the anxiety which oppressed him, and also by the weight 
of his armour, which he had now worn for a long time ; 
therefore he was persuaded, in the end, to adopt this 
counsel. On the 3rd of Ramadan the rest of the troops 
joined the baggage. The Sultan followed them the same 
night, and remained there, nursing himself and collecting 
his troops, whilst he awaited the coming of his brother, 
el-Melek el-'Adel, who arrived on the loth of the month. 




At the beginning of the month of Ramadan, 585 (October, 
1189 A.D.), the Sultan received letters from Aleppo, from 
his son el-Melek ez-Zaher — may God increase his glory ! 
In these he announced, as an unquestionable fact, that the 
king of the Germans^ was marching on Constantinople at 
the head of an immense army, with a view of invading the 
territories of the Moslems. This news made the Sultan 
exceedingly anxious, and he thought it his duty to summon 

^ The Emperor Frederic Barbarossa had been drowned in June 
1 189, in the Geuk Su on his march 10 Seleucia from Laranda. 


everyone to the Holy War, and to inform the Khalif of 
what was going forward. He entrusted this nnission to 
me, and commanded me to repair to the Lords of Sinjar, 
of Jezirat Ibn 'Omar, of Mosul, and of Arbela, calling 
upon each of them to come in person at the head of his 
troops to give battle to the infidel. He also charged me 
to repair to Baghdad, and carry this news to the Khalif, in 
order to induce him to come to our assistance. The throne 
of the Khalifate was then occupied by en-Nasr li-Din 
Illah Abu el-' Abbas Ahmed, son of el-Mostadi bi-Amr 
Illah. 1 set out upon this embassy on the nth of the 
month of Ramadan, and by God's grace was permitted to 
see them all, to deliver the message with which I had 
been entrusted, and to receive from their own lips their 
assurance of effectual help. The first to march was 'I mad 
ed-Din Zenghi, Lord of Sinjar, who started with his 
troops before the end of the year. His cousin Sinjar 
Shah, Lord of Jezirat Ibn 'Omar, marched in person at 
the head of his army. The Lord of Mosul sent his son, 
'Ala ed-Din Khorrem Shah, and the Lord of Arbela also 
set out on the march with his troops. On my arrival at 
Baghdad, I presented myself at the Khalif's divan, and 
informed him of the object of my visit, in accordance with 
my instructions, and he made me most liberal promises. 
On Thursday, the 5th of Rabi'a L, in the year 586 
(April 12, 1 190), I returned to the Sultan's service, arriving 
before any of the troops that were on the march, and 
informed him of the satisfactory replies that the princes 
had given, and of their preparations to join him. This 
news afforded him the greatest satisfaction. 




In the month of Safer (March — April) this year the Sultan 
left the camp on a hunting expedition, his mind being 
perfectly easy, for the troops were encamped at some 
distance from the enemy. He went further than he had 
intended in the eagerness of the chase, and the Franks, 
informed that the Moslems were not keeping a strict 
watch, thought that this would be a good opportunity to 
surprise them. They collected their forces, and came 
out ; but el Melek el-'Adel perceived their intention, and 
called to arms. Our men sprang into the saddle, and 
rushed on the enemy from all sides, engaging them in a 
hand-to-hand fight, so that many lives were lost. Some 
few also were wounded, but the Moslems lost no one of 
consequence except Arghish, one of the Sultan's memluks. 
This officer, distinguished for his piety and valour, had the 
good fortune to earn a martyr's death. When the Sultan 
heard what was happening, he left the chase, and returned 
to his army; but he found that it was all finished, both sides 
having returned to their respective camps. The enemy 
withdrev/, after an unsuccessful attempt, with considerable 
loss. Praise be to God ! He is the author of all mercy. 
I was not present at this skirmish, being at that time on 
my travels. The battles I have previously described I saw 
as closely as a man of my profession could see them ; with 
regard to the others, I have had them described to me 
in so much detail that it is as if I had witnessed their 
various developments. A curious thing happened in this 
last skirmish : a certain man named Kara Sonkor, one of 


the Sultan's memluks, and a brave soldier, had killed 
several of the enemy, and the comrades of the dead men 
set a snare for him. Some of them hid, whilst others went 
out and showed themselves. The memluk rushed on in 
pursuit of them, but they threw themselves on him from 
all sideS; and made him prisoner. One of these men 
seized him by the hair, and another prepared to cut off 
his head with his sabre. The blow struck the arm of the 
man who was holding the memluk, and severed his hand 
from the wrist ; the captive escaped, and succeeded in 
rejoining his comrades in safety. The Franks ran after 
him, but could not overtake him. ' God drove back the 
misbelievers in their rage ; they gat no advantage' (Kuran, 
xxxiii. 25). 



I HEARD of this occurrence by public report, because I 
was not on the spot at the time. He used to suffer from 
periodic attacks of asthma, and then he was seized with a 
flux, which weakened him very much, and to which he 
finally succumbed. Throughout his illness he retained his 
power of will and intellect. He was a generous, brave 
man, and lived a virtuous life. His zeal for the Moslem 
cause was unflagging. He passed away on Tuesday, the 
9th of Zu el-K'ada, 585 (December 20, 1 189), just as day 
was dawning. 

^ Abii Muhammad 'Aisa el-Hakkari, surnamed Dia ed-Din, was a 
Kurd who had studied law at Aleppo. He was a lawyer {fakih\ and 
was Imam to Shirkuh, with whom he went to Egypt. With the 
assistance of Beha ed-Din Karakush, he conducted the intrigue which 
raised Salah ed-Din to the post of vizir on Shirkdh's death. Salah 
ed-Din was grateful, and placed implicit confidence in him as a 
counsellor (Ibn Khallikan, ii. 430). — W. 




On Sunday, the 15th of the month Rabi'a I. (April 22, 
1 196), the Franks, who composed the garrison of esh- 
Shakif, saw that nothing could save them from the fate 
God had appointed, and that their heads would be cut off 
if the place were carried by storm. They therefore offered 
to capitulate. Several meetings took place to discuss the 
terms of the treaty ; but as they knew their lord was 
undergoing a very severe punishment, they consented to 
surrender the fortress on condition that he should be set at 
liberty, and that all those who were within should be allowed 
to go free. They were, nevertheless, obliged to leave behind 
all the treasures and supplies that had been accumulated 
in the castle. The Lord of Sidon^ repaired to Tyre, 
accompanied by all the Franks who had been with him in 
esh-Shakif. The Sultan saw how important a thing the 
possession (of Acre) was in the eyes of the Franks from all 
parts, and how their attention was always fixed on that 
city ; he therefore took advantage of the winter season, 
when ships cannot travel on the sea, to throw such 
quantities of provisions and stores, of engines of war, and 
of soldiers into the place as, under God, to ensure its perfect 
safety. He also sent to Egypt to command his lieutenants 
to equip a fleet sufficient to carry a great number of people. 
He then set out for Acre, and entered the city with great 
display, to the chagrin of the enemy. After this he dis- 
missed his troops, that they might rest until the end of the 
winter and regain their strength, and he himself remained 
in the face of the enemy with a very small body of men. At 

* Renaud of Sidon, Lord of esh-Shakif. 


this time the ground between the two armies was covered 
with mud so deep that they were unable to get at one 



When the Sultan received tidings that the Franks intended 
to march on Acre, he summoned his emirs and councillors 
together to consult them as to what course he should 
pursue. He was at this time in the Merj 'Ayun. He 
was of opinion that it would be best to attack the enemy 
and prevent them from establishing themselves in front of 
the city, ' for,' said he, * in that case, their infantry would 
protect them like a wall ; they would intrench themselves 
behind it so that we could not get at them, and then the 
city might be taken.' The council was not of his opinion. 
' Let them take up their position,' they said, ' and collect 
their troops together ; we will cut them to pieces in one 
day.' Events proved that the Sultan was right. I heard 
his words myself, and was witness of what happened. 
This is what is meant by the word of the Holy Prophet : 
' Among my people there are some who can decide and 
speak, and 'Omar is one of them.' 



The Sultan neglected no opportunity of introducing sup- 
plies and stores, arms and troops into Acre ; then, when 
the fighting season recommenced with the close of winter, 


which opened the sea once more to traffic, he sent into all 
the neighbouring countries, commanding them to dispatch 
their contingents forthwith. After receiving the first of 
these reinforcements, the Moslem army marched nearer to 
the enemy, and encamped on Tell Kisan. This took place 
on the i8th of Rabi'a I. in the year 586 (April 25, 1190). 
He drew up his troops in a right wing, left wing and centre, 
and stationed his son el-Melek el-Afdal in that part of 
the right wing nearest the centre. The contingents and 
auxiliaries kept on coming in, one after another. An 
ambassador arrived from Baghdad on a mission from the 
Khalif. He was a young man belonging to one of the 
families descended from Muhajnmad. He brought with 
him a body of experts, skilled in throwing naphtha, as well 
as two loads of that inflammable substance. He also bore a 
warrant from the Khalif, authorizing the Sultan to borrow 
the sum of twenty thousand gold pieces from the merchants 
as a contribution to the expenses of the Holy War, in 
payment of which he was to draw bills on the August 
Divan (the Court of Baghdad). The Sultan accepted all 
that the ambassador brought with him, but refused to make 
use of this warrant, lest it should oppress the provinces over 
which he ruled. This same day he heard that the Franks 
were on the point of attacking the city, and had invested 
it closely ; he therefore mounted his horse and marched 
against them, to divert their attention from the city by an 
attack on his part. The fight that ensued was stubbornly 
maintained until night separated the combatants. Both 
sides returned to their own camps. The Sultan, seeing 
that, though the Moslem army was now in full force, his 
camp was a long way from the enemy, felt that the city 
might easily be taken by storm ; he therefore removed the 
army and all the baggage to Tell el-'Ajjul.^ This was 

I 7V// cl-'Ajjul, W. of el-'Aiyadiya. 


effected on the 25th of the same month. During the 
morning of that day a man swam out from the city 
bringing letters, which said that the enemy had filled up 
part of the moat, and seemed determined to storm the 
place. The Sultan thereupon sent further messages to the 
reinforcements that had not yet arrived, urging them to 
hurry forward ; then he drew up his troops in order of 
battle, and marched nearer to the enemy so as to with- 
draw their attention from the city by occupying them in 
another direction. At dawn on Friday, the 27th of the 
month Rabi'a I. in the year 586 (May 4, 1 190), el-Melek 
ez-Zaher Ghiath ed-Din Ghazi, Lord of Aleppo, with only 
a small escort, came in in hot haste to see the Sultan, his 
father. He had left his troops encamped at some distance. 
The next day, when he had paid his respects to the Sultan 
and satisfied his longing to see him once more, he returned 
to his army and brought it in to the camp. These troops 
were so well equipped and armed that the sight of them 
filled the hearts of the Sultan's army with joy. They 
passed in review before the Sultan, who had ridden out to 
meet them on the plain. He forthwith led them quite 
close to the enemy, that the sight of such numbers of the 
soldiers of God, so well equipped, might inspire their 
hearts with terror, and fill them with apprehension. 
Towards the close of the same day Mozaffer ed-Din, son 
of Zein ed-Din, attended by only a few followers, paid a 
flying visit to the camp to pay his respects to the Sultan. 
He set out again at once to rejoin his troops, and led 
them into the camp on the following Sunday. The Sultan 
reviewed these troops, and halted with them in sight of the 
enemy, then he sent them to take up their appointed 
position. Each time reinforcements came in, he made a 
point of reviewing them, and marching them close to the 
enemy ; then he used to lead them back to the camp, and 



give them a meal, and, as all these soldiers were strangers 
to him, he would load them with presents in order to win 
their affection. After this, they would withdraw, over- 
whelmed with marks of his favour, and encamp in the 
place he allotted to them. 



The enemy had erected three towers, built of wood and 
iron, and had covered them with hides soaked in vinegar, 
to prevent their being set on fire by the combustibles hurled 
at them by the besieged. These towers were as huge as 
mountains ; we could see them from the place where we 
were; they commanded the city walls. They were set on 
wheels, and could each, according to report, accommodate 
more than five hundred men ; their roofs were broad, and 
were constructed to carry one mangonel on each. The 
sight of these engines created a profound impression on 
the Moslems ; they inspired them with a terror that defies 
description, and they gave up all hope of being able to 
save the city. All was ready, and the besiegers had only 
to wheel these towers close up to the walls, when the 
Sultan, who had been reflecting on the best means of 
setting them on fire, called together his throwers of 
naphtha, and promised them rewards in money and gifts 
if they could successfully accomplish this. They tried to 
do it, but in vain, in spite of all their skill. Amongst those 
who were looking on there was a certain young man, a 
native of Damascus, and a caldron-maker by profession. 
He said that he knew a way of setting the towers on fire, 


and that if they would send him into the city and furnish 
him with certain materials which he specified, he would 
undertake to do it. He was given the materials he asked 
for, and, thus equipped, went into the city. He then 
boiled these substances in naphtha and placed them in 
copper pots, each of which was thus full of fire. On the 
very day that el-Melek ez-Zaher, Lord of Aleppo, the 
Sultan's son, came into the camp, this man hurled one of 
the pots of fire against one of the towers, and the erection 
took fire immediately and became a mass of flames. The 
Moslems raised great shouts in praise of the one true 
God (the ta/i/i/ and the takbtr), and almost lost their senses 
in the exuberance of their joy. Whilst we were watching 
and rejoicing at this first conflagration, the man threw a 
second pot at another tower, and directly it was struck it 
burst forth into flames like the first. Then a great tumult 
arose in both armies, and their shouts mounted to the 
skies. Barely an hou| after this he struck the third tower 
with another pot and set that also on fire. I cannot 
describe the delight with which our whole army watched 
its burning. The Sultan mounted his horse towards the 
end of the day, and the troops did the same in the order in 
which they were drawn up, by right wing, left wing, and 
centre. They advanced close to the Franks, hoping to entice 
them from their camp and engage them in battle ; but they 
would not stir from their tents, and night coming on pre- 
vented the two armies from joining in battle. Our people 
attributed this (the destruction of the towers) to the arrival 
of el-Melek ez-Zaher and to the good fortune granted 
him ; his father rejoiced to have a son so distinguished, 
and firmly believed that what had happened was the result 
of the good fortune that always smiles on a virtuous heart. 
Every day the Sultan rode out in sight of the enemy, in 
the hope of persuading them to come out and fight, but 

12 — 2 


they kept close in their camp. Meanwhile, reinforcements 
kept on arriving in the Moslem quarters. 



On the 23rd of the month Rabi'a II. (May 30, 1190) 
Prince 'Imad ed-Din Zenghi, son of Maudud and Lord 
of Sinjar, came into the camp with great pomp and dis- 
play, followed by an army splendidly equipped in every 
particular. The Sultan received him with every honour, 
and drew up his troops in line of battle so as to go out 
and meet him. The kadis and (government) secretaries 
were the first from our army to appear before the prince ; 
then came the Sultan's sons, and, finally, the Sultan him- 
self, who at once led his guest to a spot in full view of the 
enemy, and, after halting there some time, brought him 
back to the camp and welcomed him to his own tent. He 
set a magnificent banquet before him, and presented him 
with a number of rare and curious things that surpass my 
powers of description. He had a cushion placed only for 
him by the side of his own, and a satin cloth laid on the 
ground of the tent for him to walk upon. Then he ordered 
a tent to be pitched for him on the extreme left of the left 
wing, close to the river. On the 7th of the following 
month, Sinjar Shah, Lord of Jezirat Ibn 'Omar, son of 
Seif ed-Din Ghazi Ibn Maudild Ibn Zenghi, came into the 
camp. He came at the head of a fine army, splendidly 
equipped. The Sultan received him with the greatest 
honour, welcomed him in his tent, and then had one 


pitched for him next to the quarters occupied by his uncle, 
'Imad ed-Din. On the 9th of the same month arrived 
'Ala ed-Din Khorrem Shah, son of Mas'ud, Prince of 
Mosul ; he represented his father, whose troops he brought 
to the Sultan. Salah ed-Din showed the greatest joy 
when he heard of his approach, and rode out a consider- 
able distance to meet him. He made him dismount, and 
led him into his own tent, where he gave him a magnificent 
present ; then he commanded a tent to be pitched for him 
between those occupied by his own sons, el-Melek el-Afdal 
and el-Melek ez-Zaher. 



The same day (June 12), at noon, we sighted a great 
number of sail out at sea. The Sultan was expecting the 
arrival of the fleet from Egypt, for he had given orders that 
it should be equipped and sent to him. He therefore 
mounted, with such of his officers as were on duty, and 
drew up his troops in battle array with the view of attacking 
the enemy and preventing their operating against the fleet. 
The Franks, on their side, prepared to oppose it, and made 
their ships ready to send out against the Moslem fleet, which 
they saw approaching. They were determined to prevent 
its coming into the harbour. When their fleet had put 
out to sea, the Sultan attacked them on the land side, and 
our people marched down to the beach to encourage the 
Moslem fleet and succour the crews. The two squadrons 
met at sea, whilst the two armies were fighting on shore ; 
the fire of war was kindled, its flames burst forth ; a furious 
engagement took place between the two fleets, which 


ended in the defeat of the enemy. One of the enemy's 
galleys was captured, and its crew massacred, and we also 
took a ship that came from Constantinople. Our victorious 
fleet entered the harbour, bringing with it a number of 
coasting-boats laden with provisions and supplies of all 
kinds. The arrival of these was a great relief to the people 
in the city, and completely restored their confidence, for 
the close blockade which they had suffered had reduced 
them to the greatest extremity. Outside the city the 
battle between the two armies raged until nightfall, 
when either side returned to its own camp. The enemy 
suffered great loss in killed and wounded, for they had to 
fight in three several places. The people in the city had 
made a vigorous attack on them to prevent their opposing 
the Moslem fleet, the two fleets had engaged one another, 
and the Moslem army had fought them on the land side, 
and in each instance we had carried off" the victory. After 
these events, during the last ten days of the month 
Jomada I., Zein ed-Din, Lord of Arbela, arrived in the 
camp with a large body of troops splendidly equipped. 
This chieftain's name was Yusuf Ibn 'Ali Ibn Bektikin. 
The Sultan received him with great honour, and enter- 
tained him in his tent with magnificent hospitality ; then 
he had a tent erected for him close to that of Mozafler 
ed-Din (so that the two brothers might be together). 



After this we received continual reports of the move- 
ments of the king of the Germans, who had just entered 


/ the dominions of Kilij Arslan.^ We heard that a great 
number of Turkomans had gone out to meet him, to 
prevent his crossing the river 2; but that, having no leader 
to direct their operations, and seeing an immense army- 
drawn up against them, they found it impossible to ac- 
complish their purpose. Kilij Arslan pretended to oppose 
the king, whilst, in reality, he was on good terms with him. 
Therefore, as soon as the king had entered his territory, he 
openly showed the sentiments he had previously cherished 
in secret, and became a partner in his plans, giving him 
hostages which the king was to keep until Kilij Arslan's 
guides had conducted the German army into the dominions 
of Ibn Laon.^ The troops suffered greatly on the march ; 
their provisions were exhausted, and they lost the chief 
part of their baggage animals. Therefore they were forced 
to abandon a great quantity of baggage, and a number of 
cuirasses, helmets, and arms, for want of transport. It 
is said that they burnt a great number of things of 
this kind, lest they should fall into the hands of the 
Moslems. They marched on in this sorry plight until 
they came to a city called Tarsus^ ; then they halted on 

^ This was 'Izz ed-Din, Kilij Arslan II., who had just divided his 
empire between his ten sons. The actual ruler at Konia (Iconium) 
during the march of Barbarossa was Kotb ed-Din Melek Shah II. — 

2 Probably the Maeander is intended. 

3 See note, p. 78. Geoffrey de Vinsauf (i. 14-17) says that Kilij 
Arslan was treacherous in his dealings and an enemy of the 

4 Tarsus was in the territory of the King of Armenia (Leo II.). 
There is a confusion here between the fever caught by Alexander 
when bathing in the Cydnus and the death by drowning of Barbarossa. 
The Emperor Frederic Barbarossa (here called king of the Germans) 
was drowned in the Calycadnus {Geuk Su) whilst on the march from 
Laranda {Karaman) to Seleucia {Selefke). (See Jacques de Vitry, 
p. Ill, P.P.T. translation.) 


the bank of a river, and made ready to cross. The king 
suddenly determined to swim across, and, although the 
water was very cold, he jumped in, worn out as he was by 
the fatigues and anxieties he had undergone. The conse- 
quence was an illness to which he finally succumbed. 
When he realized the gravity of his condition, he delegated 
his authority to the son who had accompanied him on the 
expedition. After his death his officers resolved to steep 
his body in vinegar, and carry his bones to Jerusalem in a 
casket, in order that they might receive burial in that city. 
His son was installed in his stead, in spite of some slight 
opposition, for most of his officers inclined towards the 
eldest son of the king, who succeeded his father in his 
dominions^] but the younger son, being on the spot, ob- 
tained command of the army. Knowing the reverses they 
had suffered, and the havoc that famine and death had 
made in their ranks since the king's death, Ibn Laon 
held back and did not join them- ; in the first place he 
could not tell how things would turn out, and in the 
second they were Franks, whilst he was an Armenian. 
Therefore he shut himself up in one of his strongholds in 
order to get out of their way. 

^ Henry VI. succeeded as emperor. Frederic, duke of Suabia, 
was with his father in Cilicia. 

2 This is contrary to the Frank accounts, which represent Leo II. 
and the Armenians as receiving the army hospitably after Barbarossa's 
death. In 1198 Leo was crowned king at Tarsus by the archbishop 
of Mayence. — W. 




The Sultan, meanwhile, had received a letter from the 
Catholicos,^ that is to say, from the chief of the Armenians, 
who was Lord of Kal'at er-Rum,^ a stronghold on the 
banks of the Euphrates. The following is a translation of 
this dispatch: 'With most cordial good wishes, the 
Catholicos sends the following particulars for the informa- 
tion of our lord and master, the Sultan strong to help, 
who has reunited the faithful, who bears aloft the banner 
of justice and benevolence, who is the prosperity (Sa/dk) of 
the world and of the Faith {ed-Din), Sultan of Islam and 
of the Moslems — may God prolong his prosperity, magnify 
his glory, preserve his life, confirm him for ever in good 
fortune, and lead him to the goal of all his desires ! I 
write concerning the king of the Germans and those things 
he has done since his appearance. When he left his own 
dominions he forced his way through the territory of the 
Hungarians, and obliged their king to acknowledge his 
supremacy. He carried off from him by force such money 

^ The word is written Kdtoghikos j from the Armenian Gath' oughigos 
(Greek Ka^oXtx^s)- The Catholicos was the head of the Armenian 
Church. In 1065 the Catholicos, in consequence of the state of Ar- 
menia, resided in Lesser Armenia; and until 1441 the Catholicoi 
resided at, and exercised their jurisdiction from, several different 
towns in Cilicia and Northern Syria. Hrhomgla {KaVat er-Runi) 
was purchased by the Catholicos, Gregory III., from the son of 
Jocelyn, count of Edessa, in 11 50, and it was the residence of the 
Catholicoi till 1298. — W. 

= KaVat er-Rtim^ the Turkish Rum Kaleh, N. of Bir, is built on a 
cliff at the junction of the Merzima?! Chat with the Euphrates. 


and men as he thought fit ; then he entered the country of 
the chief of the Greeks, took and pillaged several of his 
cities, and established himself therein after driving the in- 
habitants out. He forced the king of the Greeks^ to 
come and do him homage ; he took away the king's son 
and brother as hostages, as well as about forty of the 
prince's most confidential friends. He also exacted from 
him a contribution pf fifty quintals of gold, and as many 
of silver, as well as silken stuffs to an immense amount. 
He seized all his ships to transport his army from that 
coast (that of the Hellespont), bringing the hostages with 
him and retaining them until he had entered Kilij Arslan's 
dominions. He continued his march, and for three days 
the Awaj Turkomans maintained a friendly intercourse 
with him, supplying him with sheep, calves, horses, and 
other necessaries. Then they saw their opportunity to 
attack him, and troops came up from all sides and joined 
their forces ; then they fell upon the king and hung upon 
his march for three and thirty days. When he neared 
Iconium, Kotb ed-Din,*^ son of Kilij Arslan, collected his 
troops together and marched upon him. A great battle 
ensued in which the king took the prince prisoner, and 
completely routed the army of Iconium. Then he ad- 
vanced until he came within sight of that city. The 
Moslems came out in great numbers to oppose him, but he 
repulsed them and forced his way into the city, where he 
massacred a great number of Moslems and Persians, re- 
maining there for five days. Kilij Arslan sued for peace, 
which the king granted, and received from him twenty 

^ Isaac Angelos, who acceded as emperor of Byzantium after the 
revolution in 1185, was an enemy of the Latins, who were massacred 
in Constantinople in 1183. 

'■" Melek Shah II. Kotb ed-Din was the son to whom Kilij Arslan II. 
had given Konia. See p. 183. 


hostages of the nobility of the land. When he set out 
once more on his march, he followed Kilij Arslan's advice 
and took the road leading to Tarsus and el-Missisa^ ; but 
before entering that country he sent a messenger forward 
with a letter, announcing who he was and what he pur- 
posed doing ; he also gave an account of what had hap- 
pened on his way thither, declaring that he was determined 
to march through their land — if not as their friend, then as 
a foe.2 This occasioned the sending of Hatem,^ the 
memluk, with instructions to grant the passage the king 
had demanded. This officer was accompanied by several 
persons of high rank, and bore the answer to the (king's) 
letter. According to their instructions, they were to en- 
deavour to persuade the king to return to Kilij Arslan's 
dominions. When admitted into the great king's presence, 
they gave the answer into his hands, at the same time in- 
forming him that the chief object of their mission was to 
persuade him to depart. Then the king collected all his 
troops together, and took up his position on the bank of a 
river. After he had eaten and slept, he was seized with 
a desire to bathe in the cool water, which he accordingly 
did. But, by the ordinance of God, when he came out of 
the water, he was seized with serious illness, occasioned by 
the chill of his bath, and, after languishing several days, he 

^ Af/sst's, the ancient Mopsucstia^ stood on both banks of the 
Jihiin (ancient Pyramus), and occupied an important position on 
the great road from the Cilician to the Syrian Gates. It fre- 
quently changed hands during the wars between the Christians and 
Moslems.— W. 

2 Tne greater portion of Cilicia was at this period in the hands of 
Leo II., king of Lesser Armenia. The Sultans of Rum did not then 
possess any place on the coast. — W. 

3 Possibly Haithon, a common Armenian name. Amongst those 
sent to meet and compliment the German emperor was S. Narses of 
Lampron. — W. 


died.^ Ibn Laon was on his way to visit the king when 
he met his own messengers, who directly after this occur- 
rence (the king's death) had promptly left the (German) 
camp. When he learnt from them what had just taken 
place, he threw himself into one of his strongholds and 
kept close within its walls. The king's son had been 
named by his father to replace him, when he first set out 
to invade these countries, and, in spite of certain difficulties 
that were raised, he succeeded in establishing himself. 
When he heard of the flight of Ibn Laon's ambassadors, 
he sent after them and brought them back. Then he ad- 
dressed them as follows : " My father was an old man, and 
nothing would have induced him to come to this country, 
but the desire of performing the pilgrimage to Jerusalem. 
I, who have suffered so much on this journey, am now 
master. Therefore, unless Ibn Laon obeys me, I shall invade 
his dominions." On this Ibn Laon saw that he would be 
obliged to yield and visit the king in person, for he was 
at the head of an immense army ; he had lately reviewed 
them, and found that there were forty-two thousand horse- 
men, equipped with all sorts of arms, and an innumerable 
company of foot-soldiers. It was a multitude of men of 
divers nations and strange to look upon ; they were strict 
in the performance of their duty, and kept under the 
severest discipline. Anyone who disgraced himself was 
slaughtered like a sheep. One of their chiefs had ill- 
treated a servant by beating him unmercifully, and a 
meeting of priests was called to try him. It was an offence 
punished by death, and he was unanimously condemned 
by his judges. A great number of people interceded with 

^ According to S. Narses, the emperor was carried away by the 
rapidity of the river 5(?/(?/"(Calycadnus) and drowned. According to 
some accounts, the accident occurred on the march from Laranda ; 
according to others at Sdefke. — W. 


the king in his behalf, but the prince was inflexible, and 
the chief paid the penalty of death. These people deny 
themselves every enjoyment. If one of them indulges in 
any pleasure, he is avoided by his fellows and reprimanded. 
This is all in consequence of the grief they feel at the state 
of the Holy City. I have been credibly informed that for 
a long while some of them vowed to wear no clothing at 
all, and were clad in nothing but their mail ; this, however, 
was forbidden by their leaders. The patience with which 
they bear suffering, hardship, and fatigue is carried to a 
marvellous length. Your humble servant {literally memluk), 
sends you this account of the state of affairs. When any- 
thing fresh occurs, God willing, he will send you intelli- 
gence thereof. This is the letter of the Catholicos.' This 
word means vicar. The name of the writer of this letter 
was Bar Krikur Ben Basil.^ 



When the Sultan knew for certain that the king of the 
Germans had entered the territory of Ibn Laon, and that 
he was advancing on the Moslem dominions, he called the 
emirs and councillors of his Empire together, to hear their 
opinion on the course that he should pursue. They all 
agreed in advising that part of the army should be sent 
into the districts bordering on the enemy's line of march,- 
whilst the Sultan should remain with the rest of his army 

1 Parsegh, or Basil, bishop of Ani, was the son of Gregory, who 
was nephew of. Basil I. He belonged to the Arsacid family, and was 
Catholicos at Rihn Kaleh (1180-1193). — W, 


to oppose the enemy encamped (at Acre). The first of 
the emirs to set forth was Nasr ed-Din, son of Taki ed- 
Din, and Lord of Manbej.^ After him went Tzz ed-Din 
Ibn el-Mokaddem, Lord of Kefr Tab, Barin, and other 
places. Mejed ed-Din, Lord of B'albek, followed him, and 
then went Sabek ed-Din, Lord of Sheizer.^ The Yarukidi 
Kurds belonging to the army from Aleppo went next, and 
afterwards the troops from Hamah. El-Melek el-Afdal, 
the Sultan's son, also set out, followed by Bedr ed-Din, 
Governor {shihnd) of Damascus. After them went el- 
Melek ez-Zaher, the Sultan's son ; he was sent to Aleppo 
to keep a watch on the enemy's march, to gather informa- 
tion, and to protect the districts all round. Next went 
el-Melek el-Mozaffer (Taki ed-Din, the Sultan's nephew 
and Lord of Hamah), charged to protect the districts 
round his city and to keep a watch on the Germans as 
they marched past that place. This prince was the last 
to depart ; he set out on the night preceding Saturday, 
the 9th of Jomada L 586 (June 14, 1190). The with- 
drawal of these troops very much weakened the right 
wing, which had furnished the greater part of them ; the 
Sultan therefore commanded el-Melek el-'Adel to transfer 
himself to the extreme right of the right flank, and occupy 
the position left vacant by Taki ed-Din. 'Imdd ed-Din 
was posted on the extreme left of the left wing. An 
epidemic broke out in the army about this time, and 
Mozaffer ed-Din, Lord of Harran, sickened of it, but 
recovered ; it was next the turn of el-Melek ez-Zafer, but 
he also recovered. A great number of people, chiefs and 
others, were seized with it ; but, thanks be to God, the 

^ Membej. See p. 74. 

2 Sheizer is Caesarea, immediately S. of Apamea, on the Orontes, 
and otherwise called Larissa. See Jacques de Vitry, p. 24, P.P.T. 


illness took a very slight form. The same epidemic also 
appeared among the enemy, but with them was both 
more wide-spread and more severe, and occasioned great 
mortality. The Sultan maintained his position and kept 
watch over the enemy's movements. 



The king's son had replaced his father, but he was seized 
with a serious illness, which forced him to halt in the 
country of Ibn Laon. He retained with him five-and- 
twenty knights and forty Templars {Ddwid), sending the 
rest of the army forward to occupy the road to Antioch. 
As his forces were very numerous, he divided them into 
three divisions. The first, under a count of high rank 
among them, was marching close to the castle of Baghras, 
when the garrison of that place, though numbering but a 
few men, succeeded in carrying off two hundred of his 
soldiers by force and strategy. They then sent word that 
the enemy was much exhausted, that they were suffering 
from sickness, that they had but few horses and beasts 
of burden, and that their stores and supplies were almost 
entirely expended. The lieutenants, posted by the Sultan 
in the different cities of Syria, were informed of this state 
of things, and dispatched troops to find out what the 
enemy were doing. These men fell vc\ with a large body 
(of Germans), who had left their camp on a foraging 
expedition ; they attacked them smartly, inflicting a loss 
of upwards of five hundred men in killed and captives. 
That, at any rate, was the report made by our correspon- 


dents in their dispatches. A second messenger came from 
the Cathoh'cos, and was received by the Sultan ; in this 
interview, at which I was present, he informed us that, 
though the Ge/mans were very strong in numbers, they 
were in a very weak condition, for they had hardly any 
horses or supplies, and the chief part of their baggage was 
being carried by asses. ' I took up my position,' said he, 
' on a bridge they had to cross, to get a good view of them, 
and I saw a great number of men march past, almost all 
without cuirasses or lances. I asked them the reason of 
this, and they replied, " We have been spending several 
days in an unhealthy plain ; our provisions were exhausted 
as well as our wood, and we have been obliged to burn a 
great part of our stores. We have also suffered great 
losses by death. We have been obliged to kill and eat 
our horses, and burn our lances and stores for want of 
wood." ' The count who commanded their advanced guard 
died when they reached Antioch. We learnt that Ibn 
Laon, hearing of the exhausted condition of their army, 
was filled with the hope of gaining some advantage thereby, 
and, knowing that the king was ill, and had retained but 
very few men with him, he contemplated spoiling him of 
his treasures. The Prince of Antioch, too, we were told, 
hearing of this, went out to meet the king of the Germans 
and bring him into the city, with the view of appropriating 
these same treasures himself, if the king happened to die 
in the city. News kept coming in concerning the enemy, 
and we heard that the epidemic was rife among them, and 
weakening them more and more. After this el-Melek el- 
'Adel fought a battle with the enemy on the sea-shore. 




On Wednesday, the 20th of Jornada II. (July 25, 1190), 
the enemy heard that several bodies had been detached 
from our army, and that the right wing had been much 
weakened by the departure of the troops belonging to the 
various districts through which the enemy (the Germans) 
proposed to march. They (the Franks) therefore resolved 
to come out (from their entrenchments), and fall upon that 
wing whilst they were not expecting an attack. But they 
became the sport of the vain hopes they had entertained. 
The hour of noon had just passed when they issued forth, 
deploying by right wing, left wing and centre, and then 
rushing forward. As they were in strong force, they thought 
that the right wing, where el-Melek el-'Adel was encamped, 
would be unable to withstand them. When our people 
saw them coming out in order of battle, they called to 
arms, and rushed out of their tents as a lion springs from 
his lair. The Sultan sprang to his horse, crying : ' On 
for Islam !' Our horsemen leapt into their saddles, and 
the battalions formed without delay. The Sultan had just 
left his tent when I saw him ; he had only a few officers 
with him. Some of the men had not yet mounted their 
horses when he came galloping up, as anxious as a mother 
who has lost her only son. He ordered his drum to be 
beaten, and his emirs replied by ordering theirs to be 
sounded from the different positions where they were 
posted. Everyone was now in the saddle ; but by this 
time the Franks had hurled themselves on the right wing, 
and pushed on as far as el-Melek el-'Adel's tent. They 



seized everything that they found in the tents and market- 
place, killing and pillaging right and left. They reached 
the store-tent, and carried off part of the liquors that were 
kept there. When el-Melek el-'Adel was informed of what 
was taking place, he came out of his tent and mounted 
his horse, commanding those of the right wing who were 
near him to do the same. His order was obeyed by 
Kaimaz en-Nejmi the eunuch {tawdshi), and by other 
champions (lions) of Islam as brave as himself. He held 
himself in readiness, watching for an opportunity of sur- 
prising the enemy, and he was not long in finding it. The 
Franks, carried away by their cupidity, were engaged in 
pillaging the camp, and loading themselves with furniture, 
fruit, and provisions.^ When he saw them thus fully 
occupied, he commanded his men to charge, and he him- 
self rushed forward, followed by all the soldiers of the right 
wing who were on the spot. The whole of the right wing 
was already engaged, when the Mosul troops, who had 
been summoned afterwards, hurled themselves on the 
Franks like lions springing on their prey. God delivered 
the enemy into their hands. They were completely routed, 
and fled headlong back to their camp, whilst the sword 
of God did execution upon them, separating their souls 
from their bodies, and severing their heads from their, 
shoulders. The Sultan seeing, by the dust of battle that 
arose, what was going on in his brother's camp, his heart 
burning with zeal and brotherly love, and alarmed at the peril 
of his kindred, flew eagerly to help the cause of God's Faith. 
And the criers cried to the people : *' On for Islam, ye 
champions of the one God ! The enemy of God is given 
into our hands. He has dared in his greediness to enter 
your camp." His memluks, his friends, and his special guard 

^ This agrees with De Vinsauf's account. The Franks were sufifer- 
ing from starvation. 


(Jtal^a) responded to his appeal ; the Mosul army, under 
'Ala ed-Din, son of 'Izz ed-Din, came up to join him, and 
afterwards the Egyptian army, led by Sonkor el-Halebi. 
Other bands came in one after another, each brave warrior 
answering his comrades' call. The Sultan took up his 
position in the centre, fearing lest it should occur to the 
enemy to attack him there, as they knew that part of the 
army had been weakened by the withdrawal of great numbers 
of troops. As detachments kept coming up one after 
another, the fight was maintained without interruption, 
and scarcely an hour had passed before we saw our enemies 
prostrate as though they were palm-trees thrown down 
(Kuran Ixix. 7). The whole ground between el-Melek 
el-'Adel's camp and that of the enemy, a distance of a 
parasang, or perhaps a little more, was covered with bodies. 
Very 'i^^ of their people escaped. Mounted on my mule, 
I passed through a sea of blood, and tried to count the 
number of dead, but there were so many that I could 
not reckon them.^ I noticed the bodies of two women. 
Someone told me that he had seen four women engaged 
in the fight, two of whom were taken prisoners. The 
number of men made captive that day was very incon- 
siderable, for the Sultan had commanded his troops to 
spare none who should fall into their hands. The alarm 
did not reach the left wing until the battle was at an end, 
so great a distance was there between their camp and the 
scene of the fight. This battle took place between the 
Zuhr and 'Asr (between the mid-day and afternoon prayers). 
So great was the defeat of the enemy, that some of the 
Moslems who pursued them are said to have penetrated 
right into their camp. The Sultan, seeing that fortune 

^ A letter by the chaplain of Baldwin, Archbishop of Canterbury, 
reckons the Christian loss on July 25, 1 190, at 4,000 men. See Archer's 
' Crusade of Richard I.,' p. 18. 



had favoured him, called his men back from the pursuit. 
During this battle the Moslems lost only ten men, and 
these were ail people of no rank. When the soldiers of 
God, who were stationed in Acre, saw what had befallen 
the enemy, they sallied out and attacked their camp. A 
desperate fight ensued, the Moslems carrying off the victory. 
They burst into their camp, pillaged their tents, and 
carried off several women, together with a quantity of 
furniture, and even the pots in which they were then 
cooking their food. A letter from the city informed us 
of this victory. It was, indeed, a bitter day for the infidels. 
Different authorities are not agreed as to the number of 
their dead ; some say eight thousand, others seven. I 
myself saw five rows of bodies, beginning from el-'Adel's 
camp, and running right up to that of the enemy. I met 
an intelligent man, one of our soldiers, who was going up 
and down the lines counting the dead, and I asked him 
how many he had counted. He replied : ' So far there 
are four thousand and sixty odd ' He had counted two 
lines, and was engaged on the third, but in those that 
remained to be computed the dead lay still more thickly. 
This Wednesday witnessed the most brilliant triumph that 
Islam could possibly obtain. On the following day, the 
2 1st (July 26), at the hour of the 'Asr prayer, a courier 
from Aleppo arrived on a dromedary, having accomplished 
the journey in five days. The despatch he brought in- 
formed us that a strong force of the enemy, being part of 
those who had come from the north, had made an in- 
cursion into Moslem territory with a view of pillaging all 
they might find, and that the troops in Aleppo had taken 
the field and cut off their retreat, so that but very few 
of these (freebooters) had effected their escape. This news 
arrived immediately after the battle (of Acre). It was 
announced to the sound of music, and to the great joy 


of the Moslems, who were filled with delight at the thought 
of one splendid victory after another. Towards the close 
of the same day Kaimaz el-Harrani came in from the out- 
post and informed us that the enemy, finding themselves 
terribly exhausted, had expressed a wish that the Sultan 
should send' them a representative, empowered to confer 
with them on the subject of a treaty of peace. From that 
time the enemy of God remained with broken wings, until 
there arrived a count called Count Heri.^ 



This count was one of the greatest princes among the 
Franks. He came by sea, with a number of ships laden 
with money and supplies, victuals and arms, and great 
numbers of men. His presence inspired the besiegers with 
courage, gave new strength to their hearts, and they even 
indulged the hope of surprising the Moslem army by a 
night attack. They spoke so openly of this project, that 
the strangers who were allowed to visit their camp got 
wind of it, as well as the (Sultan's) spies. Therefore the 
Sultan called his emirs and councillors together, and con- 
sulted them as to what should be done. After discussing 
several plans, they finally decided to enlarge the circle and 
to withdraw further from the city, with a view of enticing 
the besiegers to come out of their camp, and then, when 
they had got some distance from it, God would deliver them 
into the hands of the Moslems. This decision pleased the 
Sultan, for God had decreed that it should find favour in 

''■ Henry of Troyes, count of Champagne. 


his sight. He therefore set out for Mount Kharruba 
with all his army. This was on the 27th of Jornada II. 
(August I). In the position they had just quitted he left 
only about one thousand horsemen as an advanced guard ; 
these men kept watch each in his turn. We con- 
tinually received letters from Acre, and s'ent answers 
back to the city ; these were carried by pigeons, by men 
swimming, or by lightly-built boats that put off at night 
and entered the harbour unknown to the besiegers. We 
received constant tidings also of the movements of the 
enemy, who were advancing from the north ; they were in 
great want of both horses and supplies, and were suffering 
severely from mortality and sickness. The whole army 
had succeeded in reaching Antioch, but had been unable 
to provide themselves with horses. We also heard that our 
fellow-soldiers in Aleppo were employed in seizing any of 
the enemy's troops that came out for grass or wood, and 
were carrying off every individual who even showed himself 
outside the camp. 



The Sultan kept up a correspondence with the king of 
Constantinople, each prince sending letters and ambassa- 
dors to the other. In the month of Rejeb, 585 (August- 
September, II 89), whilst the Sultan was encamped on the 
plain of Merj 'Ayun, a messenger arrived from the king 
bringing a (favourable) answer to a request that he had 
made through his ambassador. The Sultan was desirous of 
obtaining permission to have the khotba said in due form in 
the mosque at Constantinople, now that the preliminaries 


(of a treaty with the king) had been arranged. He had 

therefore dispatched an ambassador to provide for the cele- 
bration of the khotba in that mosque, and this man had 
been most honourably received and cordially welcomed by 
the king. In the ship in which he had performed the 
journey he had taken a preacher with his pulpit, a band of 
muezzins (to call to prayer) and several readers (whose 
duty it was to chant the Kuran). The day they entered 
Constantinople was a great day among the days of Islam ; 
great numbers of merchants and travellers were present. 
The preacher ascended his pulpit, and, surrounded by all 
the Moslems and merchants who were staying in the city, 
he delivered the Moslem invocation {khotba) in the name of 
the Abasside khalif Our ambassador then returned, ac- 
companied by the (Greek) ambassador, who was sent to 
inform us that the matter had been arranged in accordance 
v/ith the Sultan's wishes. The Greek stayed with us some 
time. I was present when he came before the Sultan, 
attended by an interpreter, to deliver the message with 
which he was charged. He was the finest of old men, and 
wore the dress peculiar to his rank. He brought a certi- 
ficate (credentials), and a letter sealed with gold. He 
stayed with us for some time, and then died. When he 
received news of his death, the king of Constantinople 
dispatched another ambassador to conclude the mission. 
This envoy brought a letter about the matter under con- 
sideration. We will describe this document, and give a 
copy of the translation. It was written in wide lines, but 
narrower than in the writing of Baghdad. The translation 
on both back and front was in the second section^ ; between 

^ Documents are extant, emanating from the Byzantine Chancery, 
in which a Latin translation is appended underneath the Greek text. 
In the document described by Beha ed-Din the text was accompanied 
by a translation into Arabic. 


the two the seal had been affixed. This seal was of gold, 
and had been stamped with a portrait of the King just as 
wax is impressed with a seal ; it weighed fifteen dinars.^ 
The two sections of the letter ran as follows : ' From 
Aisakius (Isaac) the King, servant of the Messiah, crowned 
by the grace of God, ever glorious and victorious AfgJiaki\s 
(imperial), ruling in the name of God, the invincible con- 
queror, the autocrat of the Greeks, Angelos, to His Excel- 
lency the Sultan of Egypt, Salah ed-Din, sincere affection 
and friendship. The letter written by Your Excellency- to 
My Empire^ has been safely received. We have perused 
it, and have been informed thereby of the death of our 
ambassador. This has occasioned us great grief, more 
especially because he died in a strange land, leaving un- 
finished the business with which My Empire had charged 
him, and on which he was to confer with Your Excellency, 
Your Excellency doubtless intends sending us an ambas- 
sador to inform our Empire of the decision that has been 
made relative to the business with the arrangement of which 
we charged our late ambassador. The property he has left, 
or which may be recovered after his death, must be sent 
to My Empire, that it may be given to his children and 
relatives. I cannot believe that Your Excellency will 
^\v^ ear to malicious reports of the march of the Germans 
through my dominions ; it is not surprising that my 
enemies should propagate lies to serve their own ends. 
If you wish to know the truth, I will tell you. They suffered 
themselves more hardship and fatigue than they inflicted 

^ This would make it worth about ^6 105. 

2 The Greek equivalent would be c^ox^ttjs. 

3 In official documents issued from the Byzantine Chancery, the prince 
refers to himself under the phrases /3a<riXe/a ixov or ro ijfj^Tepop xpo-To%, 
rendered in the Latin translations as impcriiim meuin or nostrum 
tmperium (Wescher). 


on my peasant population. Their losses in money, horses 
and men were considerable ; they lost a great number of 
soldiers, and it was with great difficulty that they escaped 
my brave troops. They were so exhausted that they cannot 
reach your dominions ; and even if they should succeed in 
reaching them, they could be of no assistance to their 
fellows, nor could they inflict any injury on Your Excel- 
lency. Considering these things, I am much astonished 
that you have forgotten our former (good) relations, and 
that you have not communicated any of your plans and 
projects to My Empire. It seems to My Empire, that the 
only result of my friendship with you has been to draw 
down upon me the hatred of the Franks and of all their 
kind. Your Excellency must fulfil the intention, announced 
in your letter, of sending me an ambassador to inform 
me of the decision in the business upon which I have 
corresponded with you for a long time past. Let this be 
done as soon as possible. I pray that the coming of the 
Germans, of which you have heard so many reports, may 
not weigh heavily on your hearts ; the plans and purposes 
they entertain will work their own confusion. Written in 
the year I 501.'^ When the Sultan heard the contents of this 
letter, he received the ambassador with every mark of 
honour, and assigned him a lodging suitable to his rank. 
He was an old man of noble carriage, and very accom- 
plished, for he knew Arabic, Greek, and the Prankish 

Some time after this the Franks renewed the siege of 
Acre with fresh energy, and pressed the city very close. 
They had been reinforced by the arrival of Count Henry'^ 
with ten thousand warriors. Other reinforcements reached 

^ The year 1501 of the Alexandrian era corresponds with the year 
585 of the Hejira (a.d. 1189). 
2 See pp. 35, 197. • 


them by sea, and revived their drooping courage ; therefore, 
they made a furious attack on the city. 



The enemy, feeling themselves strong — strong again on 
account of the reinforcements that continued to come in, 
set their hearts with renewed determination on winning the 
city. They brought up their mangonels and placed them 
in position on all sides, playing on the walls both day and 
night, for as soon as the men on duty were weary, fresh ones 
were sent to relieve them : thus a constant shower of stones 
was kept up without intermission. This was in the month of 
Rejeb (August, 1190). The people in the city, being thus 
hard pressed by the enemy, gave free rein to that pride of 
religion which Islam alone could have inspired. Their 
leaders at that time were, first, the governor specially 
appointed for the defence of the city, and, secondly, the 
commandant of the garrison. The former of these officers 
was the great emir Beha ed-Din Karakush, the latter the 
great isfahsaldr (general in chief) and emir Hossam ed- 
Din Abu el-Heija. Hossam was distinguished both 
for his munificence and valour ; he was of high rank 
amongst his own people (the Kurds), and the plans he 
formed bore witness to the stoutness of his heart. These 
leaders agreed on the advisability of a general sortie, 
taking advantage of the enemy's carelessness to fall upon 
them when least expected. The gates of the city were 
thrown open, and the besieged rushed out simultaneously 
on every side, penetrating into the very midst of the enemy 
before they were aware of their approach. The Moslems 


charged the infidels, who, seeing their camp -invaded, did 
not think of guarding and protecting their mangonels, and 
the pyrotechnists were therefore enabled to use their imple- 
ments with good effect. Before an hour had passed those 
engines had been set on fire and completely burnt to the 
ground. In this engagement seventy of the enemy's 
cavalry were killed, and a number of prisoners taken. 
One of their leaders happened to be among the latter ; 
the soldier who took him prisoner was not aware of his 
rank, and it was not until after the battle, when the]Franks 
inquired whether their countryman were alive or dead, that 
he knew he had captured one of their chief men. When 
he learned who his prisoner was, fearing lest he should be 
carried off by force, he lost no time in dispatching him. 
The Franks offered a large sum of money as the price of 
his body, and persisted in their demand with the greatest 
importunity until at last the body was thrown down to 
them (from the wall). When they saw him dead, they 
threw themselves on the ground and covered their heads 
with dust. This occurrence damped their ardour. They 
never let us know the name of the chief they had lost. 
From this time forth the Moslems lost all fear of the 
enemy and the Arabs got into the habit of going in and 
out of their camp to pilfer and steal, killing and taking 
prisoner those they met. The count had had a great 
mangonel built, on which he expended fifteen hundred 
gold pieces, according to information we received from the 
spies and people who were allowed to visit the enemy's 
camp. This engine, which was quite ready to be brought 
up to the walls, had escaped burning in the sortie, because 
it was at some distance from the city, beyond the furthest 
point our men touched. But, on the night preceding the 
15th of Sh'aban (September 17) some pyrotechnists and 
soldiers sallied out of the city, and laid their plans so well 


that they succeeded in getting up to the mangonel, and 
setting it on fire. At sight of the conflagration a great 
cry went up from both armies, and the enemy seemed 
paralyzed by the disaster ; as the fire broke out at a 
distance from the city, they thought they were being 
attacked from all sides. By this means God increased the 
strength of the Moslems very notably. The flames from 
the great mangonel caught another smaller one that was 
standing close by, and destroyed it as well. 



The Franks— may God confound them! — had blockaded 
the harbour of Acre to prevent Moslem ships from en- 
tering. A great famine therefore reigned in the city ; so 
some Moslems embarked in a large ship at Beirut, load- 
ing it with four hundred sacks of corn and a quantity of 
cheeses, onions, sheep and other victuals. They dressed 
themselves like Franks, and shaved off their beards that 
they might look more like the enemy ; they even put pigs 
on the bridge of the ship, so that they could be plainly 
seen, and set up crosses in conspicuous places. They then 
made towards the city, as though they had come a long 
voyage, and ran into the midst of the enemy's ships, when 
several sloops and galleys came up alongside. The crews 
of these boats said to them : * You seem to be making for 
the city,' for they took them for their fellow-countrymen. 

^ This chapter is wanting in the Oxford manuscript. 


The others replied : ' Do you mean that you have not 
taken it?' 'No/ they answered, 'not yet.' 'Very well/ 
said the disguised Moslems ; ' we will make for the army 
(of the Franks) ; but there is another ship close behind us, 
coming on with the same wind ; you must warn them not 
to enter the harbour.' There really was a Frank ship 
behind them, that was steering towards the enemy's camp. 
The people in the boats looked in the direction indicated, 
and, seeing a ship, they made towards her to warn her of 
the danger. The Moslem ship, being thus free to proceed, 
took advantage of a favourable breeze and entered the 
harbour in safety ; praise be to God therefore ! Its arrival 
caused the greatest rejoicing in the city, for the inhabitants 
were beginning to feel the approach of famine. This took 
place during the last ten days of the month of Rejeb (end 
of August and beginning of September). 



A VERY curious and noteworthy thing occurred during this 
siege ; a Moslem, named 'A.isa, used constantly to swim to 
the city, taking letters and money, which were tied round 
his loins. He used to go by night, taking advantage of 
the carelessness of the enemy, sometimes diving under 
their ships and coming up on the other side. On one 
particular night he had put on his girdle — which held three 
purses, containing a thousand pieces of gold and a packet 
of letters for the army — and started swimming for the city 
with his burden ; but he met with an accident, and lost his 
life. For some time we did not know what had happened 
to him, for the bird, which he used to let fly to tell us when 


he reached the city, did not arrive. By this we knew that 
the man must have perished. Some days afterwards some 
people who happened to be on the shore inside the city, 
found the body of a drowned man that had been cast up 
on the beach by the waves. They examined it, and found 
that it was 'Aisa, the swimmer. Tied round his loins they 
found the money and the letters, the latter having been en- 
closed in oiled silk. The gold had been sent to pay the 
troops. Never before have we heard of a dead man de- 
livering a message entrusted to his care. This also took 
place during the last ten days of the month of Rejeb. 



The enemy had brought several large mangonels into play 
on the walls of the city, and the stones hurled by these 
engines were not without their . effect on the ramparts. 
Fear was felt lest the wall should give way. They there- 
fore took two large arrows, such as are shot from a great 
arbalist,^ and making their heads red-hot, aimed them at 
one of the mangonels. They stuck in it and set it on fire. 
The enemy tried in vain to extinguish the flames, which 
were fanned by the violence of the wind. They caught 
the other mangonel, and it also was soon in a blaze. The 
heat w^as so intense that no one dared come near to stop 
the spreading of the flames. This was a great day for the 
Moslems ; they gave themselves up to rejoicing, whilst the 
infidels were occupied in meditating on the ill-success of 
their efforts. 

^ Cross-bow. See p. 57. 




The king of the Germans, having once set foot in Antioch, 
seized that city out of the hands of its lord. He first began 
to make his power felt by forcing that chief to execute his 
commands ; then he took possession of the castle by 
stratagem and treachery, and deposited his treasures there. 
On the 25th of the month of Rejeb he set out for Acre, at 
the head of his army and followers, and, passing through 
Laodicea, came to Tripoli. The marquis, Lord of Tyre, 
one of the wiliest and most influential of all the princes of 
the Franks, left the place where they were encamped and 
came to meet him. It was chiefly through the instrument- 
ality of the marquis that foreign nations were stirred up to 
come and fight us. He had had a great picture painted, 
representing the city of Jerusalem ; you could see the 
Korndma} the goal of their pilgrimage, a building they 
hold in the greatest reverence, for in it is the chapel of 
the tomb in which they assert that the Messiah was laid 
after His crucifixion. This tomb is the chief object of 
their pilgrimages, and they believe that a light descends 
upon it every year on the occasion of one of their feasts. 
In this picture a Moslem horseman was represented as 
trampHng the tomb of the Messiah under his horse's hoofs, 
whilst his beast was desecrating the monument with his 
urine. The marquis had this picture carried beyond the 
sea, and shown in all the market-places and wherever a 

^ The Church of the Resurrection is called in Arabic el-Kidina. 
The Moslems, to show their contempt, call it el-Komiwia, ' dung.' 


number of men met together. Priests, clad in hair-cloth, 
with their heads uncovered, carried it with mourning and 
groans : and by the picture he wrought on their hearts, for 
this is the root of their religion ; and how many thereby 
became pilgrims God only knows. Among the number 
was the king of the Germans and his army. The marquis, 
as he had been the principal in exciting him to this war, 
went forth to meet him, to keep up his courage, and to 
help him on the way. He took him by the coast-road, in 
order to avoid being attacked by the Moslems, who would 
have swarmed up in all directions had he tried to pass 
through the districts of Aleppo and Hamah ; in those 
parts the word of truth (the religious zeal of the Moslems) 
would have risen up against him on every side. He would, 
moreover, have been in danger of being attacked by our 
leaders. El-Melek el-Mozaffer, Lord of Hamah, marched 
against him at the head of a large body of troops that 
he had collected. He came up with the Germans, and 
his vanguard attacked them on both flanks. Had el-Melek 
ez-Zaher, Prince of Aleppo, come up in time with his 
army, the fate of the Germans would have been sealed : 
but /or every period tJure is a book (Kuran xiii. 38). Ac- 
counts do not agree as to the number of men in the German 
army, but I learned from the letters of one of our military 
correspondents that he computed them at five thousand, 
horse and foot together ; and according to all reports this 
army was two hundred thousand strong when it first 
took the field. When the Germans set out from Laodicea 
on their march to Jebela, they left about sixty horses 
behind, so broken down by fatigue and want of food that 
they were nothing but skin and bones. They continued 
their march, closely followed up by the Moslems, who 
harassed them by pilfering their goods, and killing and 
carrying off their men. This state of things continued 


until they reached Tripoli. The Sultan received tidings of 
their approach on Tuesday, the 8th of Sh'aban, 586 (Sep- 
tember 10, 1 190), quite early in the morning. He heard 
the news with great calmness, and did not stir from the 
position he had taken up, refusing to divert his attention 
from the matter he had in hand. He had to guard and 
protect the city of Acre ; to keep watch on the movements 
of the besiegers ; to send out small parties to attack them 
unawares, and harass them night and day without a 
moment's respite. He displayed the greatest confidence 
in God throughout, looking to Him alone for support, and 
cheerfully busied himself in providing for the wants of his 
soldiers, and loading with gifts the vanous /a ki7's, doctors 
of law, heads of religious communities, 'tdema^ and men of 
letters who came to visit him. The news (of the coming 
of the Germans) had made a great impression on me, but 
when I went into the Sultan's tent and saw his serenity 
and resolution I breathed more freely, and felt convinced 
that under him Islam and its supporters would win a 
glorious triumph. 



During the second ten days of the month of Sh'aban 
(middle of September), Beha ed-Din Karakush, at that 
time governor of Acre, and Hossam ed-Din Lulu, the 
chamberlain and commander of the fleet, wrote to the 
Sultan informing him that there were barely sufficient 
provisions in the city to last till the 15th of Sh'aban. 
They added that they had kept this from the knowledge of 
the garrison, lest they should become despondent. But 
the Sultan had already sent to Cairo, ordering them to fit 



out three ships and dispatch them to Acre, laden with 
victuals, provisions, and corn, and all that a besieged city- 
would stand in need of; these supplies were to be sufficient 
to last the besieged throughout the winter. The three 
vessels sailed from Egypt, put out to sea, and reached 
Acre on the evening preceding the 15th of Sh'aban. When 
they arrived there was not enough food in the city for the 
following day. The enemy's fleet came out to attack them 
whilst the Moslem army was drawn up on the beach, 
calling aloud upon God, the. indivisible and Almighty. 
The soldiers bared their heads whilst they supplicated 
God, beseeching Him to save the ships and allow them to 
enter the harbour. The Sultan stood on the beach, like 
a parent robbed of a child, witnessing the struggle, and 
imploring the help of his Lord, and the tempest of anxiety 
in his heart was beyond words. The fight raged round 
the Egyptian ships, which were attacked on all sides ; but, 
thanks to the protection of God, there was a strong breeze, 
and they entered the harbour safe and sound in the midst 
of the furious shouts of the one side and the acclamations 
of the other. The garrison received them with great joy, 
and began to unload their cargoes ; and it was a very 
happy night in the city. It was in the afternoon of Mon- 
day, the 14th of Sh'aban, that the ships arrived. 



On the 22nd of Sh'aban the enemy fitted out a great 
number of boats to lay siege to the Fly-Tower,^ which is 

^ T/ie Tower of Flies is shown on Marino Sanuto's map of Acre, at 
the end of the western mole in the harbour, S. of the city. 



ACRE AS /r WAS WHSAf LOST ( A.O. 1291). 



built on a rock at the entrance to the harbour, and is 
surrounded on all sides by the sea. It protects the 
harbour ; every vessel (coming in) that gets past the 
tower is safe from attack by an enemy. The besiegers 
were anxious to get possession of it in order to make them- 
selves masters of the port, when they could effectually close 
it against (Moslem) vessels, and prevent provisions entering 
the city. With this view they fixed turrets on the top 
of the masts of their ships and filled them with faggots, 
intending to sail close up to the Fly-Tower, and, as soon 
as they came alongside, to set the wooden towers on 
fire, and hurl them on to the terrace of the Fly-Tower ; 
they would then take possession of it after they had 
.killed the garrison. One boat was filled with combustibles 
to throw on the tower as soon as it should have caught 
fire. The besiegers filled another ship with wood and 
similar materials, with a view of sending it into the midst 
of the Moslem vessels in the harbour, and then setting 
it on fire, so as to burn them and the provisions with 
which they were laden. A third ship was covered in with 
a roof {Kabu) to protect the soldiers, who were drawn up 
underneath, against arrows and projectiles hurled from the 
engines of war. These men, as soon as they had set (the 
tower) on fire were, according to their instructions, to 
withdraw under the roof, so as to be sheltered from our 
missiles. They dispatched the aforesaid (the first) vessel 
towards the tower, in great hopes, for the wind was 
favourable. Then they set fire to the fire-ship which was 
to go among the Moslem vessels, and also to the tower 
that was to consume the defenders of the Fly-Tower ; they 
were throwing some more naphtha on it, when, by the 
grace of God, the wind changed and upset their plans. 
They then tried to extinguish the flames on the- ship they 
had set on fire, but in vain, and all the godless crew 

14 — 2 


perished. The fire-ship dispatched against the Moslem 
vessels had caught fire ; but our comrades leapt on board 
and took possession of it. The crew of the ship that had 
been roofed in hesitated, were seized with fear and attempted 
to turn about ; a dispute ensued on the subject, and in the 
scuffle and confusion the ship capsized ; as no one could 
get out from underneath the roof, every one on board 
perished. These events were unmistakable signs of the 
will of God, and great wonders upholding God's religion; 
and it was a day of testimony. 



We will now continue our narrative of the king of the 
Germans. He halted in Tripoli to allow his troops time 
to rest and recover their strength, and sent on to Acre to 
announce that he would soon join the besiegers. They did 
not receive this intelligence with great joy, now that the 
marquis, Lord of Tyre, had become the king's chief 
counsellor and confidential adviser ; for King Geoffrey,^ 
who, thanks to his army, was supreme in the districts on 
the coast, and whose decision was always final in their 
councils, saw very clearly that the German's arrival would 
deprive him of his authority. During the last ten days of 
the month of Sh'aban he (Frederick, duke of Swabia, 
chief of the German army) had some ships fitted out, and 
collected others from all parts, for he saw that unless they 

^ Beha ed-Dtn always makes the mistake of writing 'Geoffrey' for 
* Guy.' 


went by sea they would most certainly be lost, as our men 
held all the passes through which he would have to march. 
Then, having embarked with all his men, horses, and 
supplies, he set out to join the Frankish army. Hardly 
had he started before a furious wind sprang up, and his 
fleet was almost swallowed up in the waves that broke over 
them in all directions. Three cargo-vessels were lost, and 
the remainder returned to port to await a more favour- 
able wind. After the lapse of a few days they put out 
once more with a favourable breeze, and succeeded in 
making Tyre. The marquis and the king remained there, 
sending all that remained of their troops to join the army 
that was encamped before Acre. On the 6th of Ramadan 
(October y.), the king of the Germans^ embarked alone with 
a (ew followers, and arrived in the camp of the Franks 
the same day towards sunset. We were informed of what 
took place by the spies, and people who were allowed to 
visit the camp. His arrival produced a great effect both 
on besiegers and besieged. Being anxious to signalize his 
presence by some feat of arms, he made a speech to the 
Franks a few days after his arrival, reproaching them for 
having remained still so long, and representing how much 
better it would be to meet the Moslems in the open field. 
When they showed him the dangers of such a course, he 
declared they must absolutely make a sortie and attack 
the Moslem advanced guard, 'just to test it,' he said, 'to 
try its strength and see what they can do.' Thereupon he 
rode out to attack the guard, and the greater number of the 
Franks followed him. They crossed the plain lying 
between the hill they occupied and that of el-'Aiadiya, 
where the advanced guard was drawn up. The different 

^ Frederick of Suabia was not king of the Germans, but brother of 
the Emperor Henry VI. 


divisions of our army occupied this position in turn, and 
that day it was the turn of the Sultan's halka. When they 
saw the enemy advancing, they waited facing them, and 
made them taste death in the conflict. As soon as the 
Sultan heard what was taking place, he mounted his horse 
and rode to the hill of Kisan, followed by a great number 
of Moslems. When the enemy saw this movement, they 
withdrew, having had several men killed and a great 
number wounded, and they returned to their camp about 
sunset. Night separated the combatants. We had two 
killed and a great many wounded. But the enemy of 
God was baffled. After this, the king of the Germans 
turned his attention to attacking the city, and took care 
that the blockade was maintained very strictly. He had 
som.e extraordinary engines made, of a most peculiar con- 
struction, the terrible aspect of which made the garrison 
fear for the safety of the city. Amongst these new 
inventions was a great machine, covered with iron plates 
and mounted on wheels, that would accommodate a great 
number of soldiers. It was furnished with a huge head 
with a strong iron neck which was to butt against the walls. 
It was called a ram. It required a great many men to 
move it, and was to strike the walls with great force and 
such impetus that they would give way before it. Another 
of their machines was in the form of a roof, made to cover 
a number of men ; it had an elongated head like the 
share of a plough. The first of these machines would 
destroy a tower by its mere weight, the other by its 
combined weight and pointed form. This one was called 
a cat. As to the mantelets and huge ladders they made, 
they could not be counted. They also had a great ship, 
which carried a tower provided with a drawbridge, which, 
when they came close up to a wall, could be let down by 
some peculiar mechanism, thus forming a way by means 


of which soldiers could be introduced into the place 
attacked. They intended to bring this machine alongside 
the Fly-Tower and get possession thereof. 



When the enemy had completed these machines, they 
began to bring them up to the city, which they intended 
to attack on all sides at once. The garrison displayed 
undiminished resolution ; as they were fighting in God's 
cause, they determined to make a desperate resistance. 
On Monday, the 3rd of Ramadan of the above year 
(October 4) the Syrian troops, splendidly equipped, well 
disciplined, and excellently armed, came into the camp 
under the leadership of el-Melek ez-Zaher, the Sultan's son, 
and Prince of Aleppo. This prince was accompanied by 
Sabek ed-Din, Lord of Sheizer, and Mejed ed-Din, Lord 
of B'albek. The Sultan, although his health was not good, 
and he was suffering from an attack of bilious fever, 
mounted his horse and went out to meet them. This day 
was like a feast-day in more respects than one. The 
enemy marched close up to the city in great multitudes; 
the inhabitants, the garrison, and the Moslem leaders most 
renowned for the wisdom of their counsel, allowed them to 
draw near ; then — when they had plunged the claws of 
their cupidity into the city, dragged their engines of war 
right up to the walls, and lowered a number of men into 
the ditches — then, and not till then, they hurled down 
upon them bolts from their arbalists, stones from their 
mangonels, arrows from their bows, and various com- 
bustibles ; then they sallied out in a body, throwing open 


the gates, prepared to lay down their lives for God. They 
rushed upon the enemy from all sides, and fell upon the 
people in the ditches unawares. God filled the hearts of 
our enemies with terror, they fled pell-mell to the pro- 
tection of their camp, for they had lost a great number of 
killed and wounded, and many of those who had gone 
down into the ditches had lost their lives. The Moslems, 
seeing that the besiegers had given themselves up to panic 
and flight, ran up to their ram and succeeded in setting it 
on fire by throwing naphtha and flaming brands on it. 
Then there rose mighty shouts of the takbir and the 
tahlil. The conflagration of the ram raged so fiercely 
that it spread to the cat, which was burnt to the ground. 
The Moslems attached chains to the ram, furnished at the 
ends with iron hooks, and dragged it, all flaming as it was, 
right into the city. It was built of enormou beams. 
They threw water over it, and in a few days it became 
quite cooL I have been told that the iron used in the 
construction of this machine weighed one hundred Syrian 
quintals, each quintal weighing one hundred rail} One 
Syrian raH is equal to four and a half Baghdad rail. The 
head of the machine was brought to the Sultan and laid 
before him. I saw it and moved it myself; it was in form 
like the great axle of a mill-stone. I should think this 
machine would have destroyed anything it was brought to 
bear against. This was a glorious day for Islam. The 
enemy, baulked of their expectations, dragged back all the 
machines that were left, and made no further movement. 
The Sultan was filled with joy at the coming of his son, 
el-xMelek ez-Zaher, for he regarded his presence as the 
certain forerunner of good fortune. Indeed, this was the 
second time that el-Melek's arrival had coincided with the 
winning of a battle. On Wednesday, the 15th of Rama- 

^ The ordinary rati wei^jhs t'Aelve ounces (Troy weight). 


dan, our comrades sallied out (of the harbour) of the city 
with several galleys and made an unexpected attack on 
the ship that had been got ready to storm and take the 
Fly-Tower. They threw bottles full of naphtha into it, 
the ship caught fire, and the flames rose to a great height. 
This occurrence grieved the king of the Germans very 
much, and caused him the greatest vexation. On Thurs- 
day, the 1 6th, a carrier-pigeon brought us a letter from 
Aleppo, in which was enclosed another from Hamah. In 
the letter we were informed that the prince, Lord of 
Antioch, had gone out at the head of his troops on an ex- 
pedition against the Moslem villages that lay nearest to 
his city. The officers and troops in the service of el-Melek 
ez-Zaher were watching his movements, and had laid 
several ambushes, which were unknown to the enemy until 
they fell into them and were put to the sword ; they had 
killed seventy-five (of the Christians) and taken a number 
of prisoners. The prince himself had taken refuge in a 
place called Shiha, from whence he had escaped to his own 
city. During the second ten days of this month two ships 
that were coming to the enem}*, laden with men, women, 
and children, and a great quantity of corn and sheep, went 
aground in a storm of wind. They both fell into the 
hands of the Moslems. The enemy had just seized one of 
our ships that was bringing men and money to Acre, but 
the taking of these two ships counteracted the bad im- 
pression produced on our men by the loss of our vessel, and 
amply compensated for the mischance. From that time 
we used continually to receive news from the spies and 
people whom the enemy allowed in the camp, and we were 
informed by them that the besiegers intended to come out 
and fight a pitched battle with the Moslem army. The 
Sultan was ill just then, suffering from a bilious fever; he 
therefore thought it best to move his army back as far as 


the hills of Shefr'am.i j^q repaired thither himself on the 
19th of Ramadan and took up his position on the summit 
of the hill, and the troops encamped on the tops of the 
te//s to avoid the mud and prepare for settling into winter 
quarters. The same day Zein ed-Din Yusuf, son of Zein 
ed-Din ('Ali), and Lord of Arbela, being very ill from two 
successive fevers, asked leave to return to his own country. 
Not obtaining this, he solicited and received permission to 
go to Nazareth. There he spent several days nursing him- 
self; but his illness grew worse and worse, and he died on 
the night preceding Tuesday, the 28th of Ramadan 
(October 29, iigo). His brother, Mozaffer ed-Din Kukburi^ 
was present when he died. Everyone deplored the prince's 
fate, dying so young and so far from home. The Sultan 
granted Mozaffer ed-Din the government of Arbela, and 
received in exchange Harran, Edessa, Someisat, el- 
Muezzer, and the districts dependent on those cities; but 
he gave him also the city of Sheherzur. Having confirmed 
these arrangements by oath, he summoned el-Melek el- 
Mozafifer Taki ed-Din 'Omar, son of his brother Shah- 
anshah (Prince of Princes), to take the position Mozaffer 
ed-Din had occupied, and to fill the vacancy that his 
departure would occasion. Mozaffer ed-Din remained in 
the camp until Taki ed-Din arrived. On the 3rd of 
Shawal (November 3) Taki ed-Din came, bringing with 
him Mo'ezz ed-Din. 

^ Shefr'am, now Shcfa 'Avir, on the road to Nazareth, 10 miles^ 
S.E. of Acre. 




Mo'EZZ ed-Din, surnamed Sinjar Shah (King of Sinjar)^ 
was the son of Seif ed-Din Ghazi, son of Maudud and 
grandson of Zenghi. At the time of which we are speak- 
ing, he was prince of Jezirat Ibn 'Omar. We have already 
recorded the date of his arrival to take part in the Holy 
War. Fatigued, tired-out, and overdone by the length of 
his stay, he several times sent messengers and letters to 
the Sultan, begging permission to return home. The 
Sultan declined granting him leave on the ground that 
though he was constantly receiving messengers from the 
Franks, who were now anxious to obtain terms of peace, 
he could not diminish his forces before he knew for certain 
whether there would be war or peace. The prince, never- 
theless, continued to press his request for leave, and on the 
day of the breaking of the fast in the year 586 (November i,. 
1 190), he appeared at dawn at the entrance of the Sultan's 
tent, and demanded admittance. The Sultan declined ta 
receive him on account of an illness from which he was 
suffering, and which had upset his health ; but Mo'ezz 
ed-Din persisted in his demand, until at last he was suffered 
to enter. He presented himself respectfully before the 
Sultan, and earnestlj^ requested leave to depart. The 
Sultan answered him by pointing out once more the 
reasons of his refusal, adding : ' At a time such as this it 
is my duty to collect troops rather than to dismiss them.' 
The prince then knelt to kiss his hand in the manner of a 
man who is taking farewell, and left the tent at once. He 
went straight back to his troops, and commanded them to- 


abandon their cooking-pots and the food they contained, 
and to strike their tents and follow him. When the Sultan 
was informed of the foolhardy step he had taken, he gave 
orders that a letter should be written to the runaway prince 
in the following terms : * On several occasions you craved 
my protection and told me the fear you entertained of 
several members of your family, who, you said, were pre- 
pired to attack your person and take the city out of your 
hands. I granted your petition, and gave you both shelter 
and support. Since then you have laid hands on the goods 
of your subjects; you have spilt their blood, and brought 
disgrace upon them. Several times I sent to you, warning 
\ ou to desist from such a course, but you paid no heed to 
iiiy commands. Afterwards, when this war arose — on the 
r suits of which the future of our religion so largely depends 
— you came here with the army, on my invitation, as you 
yourself know, and as all the people know. After remain- 
ing here some time, you grew restless, made a commotion, 
and took your departure full of discontent, without waiting 
to see the result of our war against the enemy. Now, you 
may do as you will ; look out for another protector, and 
defend yourself as best you can against those who may 
attack you. I shall concern myself no further on your 
account.' A courier was dispatched with this letter on a 
dromedary, and overtook the runaway close to Tiberias. 
The prince acquainted himself with the contents of the 
missive, but took no heed of their import, and continued 
on his way. El-Melek el-Mozaffer Taki ed-Din, who had 
been summoned to replace Mozaffer ed-Din, whose de- 
parture we recorded above, met the prince on a hill called 
the 'Akaba of Fik,^ and seeing how he was hastening along, 
and that for some reason or other he seemed not best 

' The 'Akabah (or ' Ascent ') of Fik was the road to the heights 
E. of the Sea of Galilee. 


pleased, he asked him what was the matter. The prince 
told him what had occurred, complaining that the Sultan 
had given him neither a robe of honour nor permission to 
depart. From this el-Melek el-Mozaffer saw at once that 
the prince had come away without the Sultan's leave, and 
even against his commands. He therefore said to him : 
* The best thing you can do is to return to your duty in 
the camp, and wait until the Sultan will listen to you. 
You are but a young man, and have not reflected on the 
consequences of your action.' The prince replied : * I can- 
not go back;' whereupon Taki ed-Din said : * Go back, or 
I shall make you ; there will be no peace of mind if you 
go off in this fashion.' The prince persisted in his deter- 
mination, and answered el-Mozaffer very rudely ; where- 
upon the latter said : ' Back you go, willing or not' Now, 
Taki ed-Din was a very resolute character, ready for any 
emergency, and afraid of no man. Therefore the prince 
returned with him, knowing full well that, unless he did so 
of his own accord, he would be stopped and taken by 
force. When they approached the camp, el-Melek el-'Adel 
went out to meet Taki ed-Din, to show him honour, and, 
as we were in his train, we saw that Tal^i ed-Din had 
brought Mo'ezz ed-Din with him. The two princes (el- 
'Adel and Taki ed-Din) repaired to the Sultan's tent, and 
obtained pardon for el-Mo'ezz. That prince was so fearful 
for his safety, that he sought and obtained leave to pitch 
his tent close to Taki ed-Din, remaining in that position 
until the time of his departure. 




"'ImaD ED-DiN, uncle of the above young prince, made 
continual applications for permission to return home, com- 
plaining of the severity of the winter, for which he had 
been able to make no preparations. The Sultan assigned 
as an objection that negotiations for peace were pending 
with the enemy, and that, if matters turned out as he 
expected, he had decided, with the advice of his council, 
that Tmad ed-Din ought to be present at the ratification 
of the treaty. The prince then demanded winter tents, 
but did not succeed in getting them ; the money he 
petitioned for was also refused. Messages were continu- 
ally sent backwards and forwards on this subject between 
the Sultan and the prince, the Sultan always finding good 
reasons to justify his position. I myself took a part in 
these negotiations. 'Imad ed-Din's determination to depart 
was so firmly fixed that it baffles description ; whilst the 
Sultan's resolution was equally strong to detain the prince 
until the result of the negotiations with the Franks should 
be known. This being the state of things, Tmad ed-Din 
went so far as to send a formal request to the Sultan, 
•written in his own hand, asking permission to depart. A 
certain bitterness was noticeable under the courteous terms 
of this letter. The Sultan wrote the following words on 
the back of the petition with his own royal hand : * I should 
like to know what advantage it would be to you to lose 
the support of a man like me.' After 'Imad ed-Din had 
received this answer, he refrained from making any further 




We were constantly kept informed as to the enemy ; they 
were suffering severely from scarcity of food, for famine 
prevailed throughout their territories, and had now invaded 
their camp. The scarcity reached such a height that at 
Antioch the price of a sack of corn rose to ninety-six 
Tyrian dinars. But this only strengthened the obstinate 
resolution of the besiegers. Nevertheless, the uncertainty 
of their position and their sufferings from want of food, 
which grew worse from day to day, caused a great many 
to desert to us, so as to escape the pangs of hunger. The 
rest, encouraged by an idea that the Sultanas illness kept 
him to his bed, left camp with their horse and foot, well 
supplied with provisions and materials for encamping. 
This was on Monday, the nth af Shawal (November 11, 
1190). They made for the wells sunk by the Moslems 
below Tell 'Ajjul, when they were encamped on the hill. 
They carried with them a supply of barley sufficient for 
four days. When the Sultan was informed that they had 
sallied forth, he ordered the advanced guard to retreat 
before them as far as Tell Kisan. At this time they were 
drawn up on the hill of el-'Aiildiya. The enemy halted 
close to the wells^ about four o'clock that day, and passed 
the night there. Throughout the night our advanced guard 
maintained a strict watch round their encampment. At 
dawn the next morning the Sultan received news from the 
guard that the enemy was preparing to mount ; but he 

There are still wells at Te// Keisdn. 


had already given orders, early in the night, for the bag- 
gage to withdraw to Nazareth and to el-Keimun.^ The 
baggage was sent back, but our troops did not stir from 
their position, and I was amongst those who remained 
with the Sultan. He then drew up his army in order of 
battle, arranging them by right wing, left wing, and 
centre ; after which he mounted his charger, and, at the 
call of the herald {Shdwish) they mounted. The army 
proceeded to march as far as a tell in the hills of el- 
Kharruba, where we halted. The right wing marched on 
until its right flank rested on the mountain ; then the left 
wing began moving and advanced until its extreme left 
reached the river,^ close to the seashore. The leaders of 
the right wing were el-Melek el-Afdal, Lord of Damascus, 
the Sultan's son ; el-Melek ez-Zaher, Lord of Aleppo, 
another of the Sultan's sons ; el-Melek ez-Zafer, Lord of 
Bosra, the Sultan's son ; 'Ala ed-Din Khorrem Shah, son 
of 'Izz ed-Din, Lord of Mosul ; and his brother, el-Melek 
el-'Adel,^ who occupied the extreme right of this wing. 
Then came Hoss^m ed-Din Ibn Lajin; and next Kaimaz en- 
Nejmi, the eunuch; 'Izz ed-Din Jordik (who had been one of 
Nur ed-Din's memluks) ; Hossam ed-Din Bishara, Lord of 
Banias ; Bedr ed-Din Dolderim, Lord of Tell-Basher ; and a 
number of other emirs. The left wing w'as commanded by 
'Imad ed-Din Zenghi, Lord of Sinjar ; and his nephew, 
Mo'ezz ed-Din, Lord of Jczirat Ibn 'Omar; and the 
extreme left was under the command of his nephew, 
el-Melek el-Mozaffer Taki ed-Din. 'Imad ed-Din Zenghi, 

» El-Keimun (Jokneam of O.T., called Caimont by the Franks) was 
below Carrnel by the Kishon, i8 miles S. of Acre. 

2 Apparently the south branch of the Belus at ^Ayujt el-Bass, in 
front of the Franks and on their left flank. 

3 El-Melek el-'Adel Nur ed-Din Arslan Shah, the emir named 
.ibove, was son of 'Izz ed-Din Mas'ud, and, consequently, brother of 
'Ala ed-Din Khorrem Shah. 


who was too ill to be at his post, had gone back with 
the baggage ; but his troops remained with the army. 
On the left wing might be seen Seif ed-Dia 'Ali Ibn 
Ahmed el-Meshtub at the head of the troops (furnished 
by the Kurdish tribes) of Mihrani and Hekkar ; with him 
were Khoshterin, and several other Kurdish emirs. The 
Sultan's /la/ka (or guard) occupied the centre. By the 
Sultan's orders, each body of troops detached a company 
of marksmen to join the advanced guard and surround 
the enemy. He concealed several battalions behind the 
hills, hoping they would be able to find an opportunity of 
surprising the Franks. The enemy's troops continued to 
advance, though they were entirely surrounded by our 
marksmen ; they followed the east bank of the river until 
they cam.e to the spring head.^ There they wheeled, and 
crossing to the west bank, came to a halt on rising ground, 
where they pitched their tents. Their camp stretched 
lengthwise from the hill to the river bank. During this 
day's march they had had a great many wounded, and lost 
a considerable number of killed. Whenever one of their 
men was wounded, they took him up and carried him with 
them, and they buried their dead as they marched, so that 
we might not know the extent of their losses. They came to 
a halt in the afternoon of Tuesday. Our troops then quitted 
them, and returned to take up advantageous positions for 
purposes of resistance and defence. The Sultan gave 
orders for the left wing to face the enemy with their flank 
resting on the sea-shore, whilst the right wing was drawn up 
facing the river, their extreme right resting on the east 

^ /^ds el-Md (' the spring head '), now ''Ayiln el-Bass (' springs of 
the swamp '), immediately E. of Tell Kurdaneh, 6 miles S. of Acre. 
According to De Vinsauf, Geoffrey, brother of King Guy, made this 
expedition in order to meet a convoy landed at Haifa, which he brought 
back safely to Acre, forcing the bridge mentioned below. 



bank.^ Meanwhile, our marksmen harassed the enemy with 
an uninterrupted shower of arrows. The whole night was 
passed in this manner. The Sultan, attended by us of his 
suite, went to the top of Mount Kharruba, and took up his 
quarters in a small tent ; his attendants camped all round 
in tents as small as his, and in full view of the enemy. 
News of the enemy came in every hour until morning 
broke; and the next day, being Wednesday, the 13th of 
Shawal (November 13, 1190), he was informed that they 
were preparing to mount. He lost no time, therefore, in 
getting into the saddle, drew up his troops, and advanced 
to the hills of el-Kharruba that lay nearest the enemy, 
whence he could observe all their movements. Although 
he was suffering from illness, and his body was very weak, 
his heart was as resolute as ever. He then sent an order 
to his troops to attack, to hem the enemy in closely, and to 
charge them from all sides ; the reserves were ordered to 
keep close at hand — not too near, and not too far off — 
to support those who were engaged. This state of things 
lasted until noon, when the enemy prepared to leave the 
west bank of the river,^ and cross to the other side to 
return to their camp ; they were thereupon smartly attacked 
on all sides, except in the direction of the river. A fierce 
fight ensued, in which they suffered heavy losses, burying 
their dead, and carrying off their wounded, as is their 
custom. The standard of the Franks, on a staff as tall as 

^ The Moslem position thus extended N.E. and S.W., S. of the 
Franks and N. of the Kishon, their base being at Shefa 'Amr — a 
retreat of three miles from their former line near Tell Keisan. The 
right flank was near 'Ayiu? el-Bass. 

2 The Franks marched along the plain E. of the A^a/ir N'amet'n, or 
S. affluent of the Belus River, towards TV// Ktirddneh. Beha ed-Din 
does not mention the convoy, but the Moslem left must have been 
broken, and the attack now made was from the E. and N., to prevent 
the retreat of the Franks by the D'auk bridge. 


a minaret, was set up on a cart drawn by mules ; it had a 
white ground with red spots ; the top of the (staff) was 
surmounted by a cross. The Franks defended it zealously, 
even at the cost of their lives. Their foot-soldiers formed 
an outer ring like a wall to cover their cavalry, and they 
used their arbalists and bows with such skill that no one 
could get near, or single out their horsemen. Meanwhile, 
the Moslems never ceased beating their drums, sounding 
their trumpets, and proclaiming with a loud voice the unity 
and power of God. The Sultan continually reinforced the 
detachments of marksmen from the reserves and the troops 
he had with him, so that at last he was left with but very 
few. The enemy continued to advance until past mid-day, 
when they reached the head of D'auk bridge.^ Their troops 
were then parched with thirst, worn out with fatigue, and 
riddled with wounds, and, moreover, they had suffered 
terribly from the heat. The Moslems exhibited the greatest 
valour this day, and the soldiers of the ka/^a (the guard) 
particularly distinguished themselves. This body had had 
a great many men wounded ; amongst the number was 
'Aiaz'^ et-Tawil (the long man), who had displayed the 
greatest bravery in the fight ; Seif ed-Din Yazkoj had 
received several wounds ; there were a great number of 
wounded among the memluks and in the halka. Our men 
continued to press the enemy closely until past mid-day, 
when they reached D'auk bridge and crossed it, cutting it 
down as soon as they had gone over, to prevent the Moslems 
following them. The Sultan withdrew once more to the 
hill {tell) of el-Kharruba, which was guarded by a detach- 
ment of troops, and reports were constantly brought in to 
him of the movements of the enemy. During the night 

^ This bridge, N. of Umck^ crossed the E. affluent of the Belus (now 
Wadi Halziut)^ 3^ miles S.E. of Acre. 
2 Some editions have A'^/^rtr^Z-Tl^'ze'f/. 



he decided to attack the remainder of the enemy. He 
therefore wrote to the people in the city informing them of 
his plan, and commanding them to make a sortie on their 
side as soon as he should begin the attack. As he received 
no reply to his letter, he abandoned the idea. On Thursday 
morning, the 14th, as soon as the Sultan heard that the 
enemy were preparing to move, he mounted his horse, and 
drew up his battalions in their appointed order, command- 
ing that no one should commence fighting until the signal 
was given. He feared an unexpected attack from the 
enemy's troops, who had advanced close to his camp. He 
posted his battalions on the east bank of the river that 
they might be in readiness to advance on the enemy, and 
pursue them to their camp. Amongst the leaders of the 
Franks on this expedition were Count Henry and the 
marquis. The son of the king of the Germans had remained 
in the camp with a strong body of troops. As soon as the 
enemy reached their camp, the battalions which had been 
left behind, and were fresh and eager for the fight, sallied 
out, and attacked the Moslem advanced guard. In the 
combat that ensued the enemy suffered heavily in killed 
and wounded. The Moslems lost five men, and the Franks 
lost a man of high rank amongst them. He rode a great 
charger, covered with a hammer-cloth of chain-mail that 
reached down to its hoofs, and he was apparelled in most 
extraordinary fashion. When the fight {/zUra//y, the war) 
was finished, his countrymen sent to ask his body at the 
Sultan's hands. The body was given to them ; but the 
head, which they were anxious to have as well, could not 
be found. The Sultan returned to his camp, and ordered 
the baggage forward from the place to which it had been 
sent. Both sides took up their respective positions once 
more. 'Imad ed-Din also returned, having got rid of his 
fever. The Sultan was still very ill, and his recovery was 


hindered by his vexation at the escape of the Franks who 
had made the sortie. He had not been able to take an 
active part in the encounters, and all the while I myself 
witnessed the tears of vexation he shed. I was present, 
too, when he sent out his sons, one after another, to take 
part in the battle, and engage in the fight. I was there 
when someone said in his presence that the air of the plain 
of Acre had been made unhealthy by the great number of 
dead left by either side on the field. When he heard these 
words, he quoted the following verse, applying it to himself, 
'Kill me and Malek ; kill Malek with me.'^ By this he 
meant that he would be content to die, provided the enemies 
of God perished with him. This reply created a deep 
impression throughout the Moslem army. 



On the 22nd of the month of Shawal the Sultan, being 
minded to lay an ambush for the enemy, chose from his 
army a number of well-armed, brave, and resolute soldiers, 
who were all good horsemen. He ordered them to repair 
by night to the foot of a te/l that lies to the north of 

^ In the battle of the Camel, which took place in the year 36 of the 
Hejia, between the followers of Khalif 'All and those of 'Aisha, 
Muhammad's widow, Malek el-Ashter, one of 'All's most devoted 
friends, attacked 'Abd Allah Ibn ez-Zobeir, and wounded him in the 
head. The wounded man clutched at his adversary, and fell to the 
ground with him. They struggled together for some time, and Ibn 
ez-Zobeir called out to his soldiers, in the words of an old poet, to kill 
Malek at any cost, even if they had to kill him at the same time. 
The combatants were separated by their respective friends. — Ibn 
el-Athir's ' Kamel,' vol. iii., p. 206. 


Acre, not far from the enemy's camp, and there to conceal 
themselves. This was the position El Melek el-'Adel had 
held in the fight that bears his name. A few of their 
number were instructed to show themselves to the enemy 
and to advance in the direction of their camp ; then, as 
soon as they had drawn them out, they were to take to 
flight and rejoin their comrades. During the night these 
men repaired to the tel/ and hid themselves. On the 
following day, which was Saturday, the 23rd of the same 
month (November 23), as soon as the sun had risen, a few 
of their number, mounted on good horses, made their way 
towards the camp, discharging arrows at the Franks. The 
enemy, provoked by this unceasing shower of darts, came 
out to avenge themselves to the number of two hundred 
knights, armed at all points, mounted on horses splendidly 
caparisoned. There was not a single foot-soldier among 
them. They advanced towards their assailants, expecting 
to make short work of such a small company. When our 
men saw them advancing they began to retreat towards 
the ambush, fighting as they went. As soon as the Franks 
had reached the spot, the soldiers who were in ambush 
raised a mighty shout and rushed upon them, like lions 
springing on their prey. The Franks at first stood firm 
and fought bravely, then they turned their backs and 
began to retreat; but the Moslems, having them in their 
power, attacked them so furiously that they stretched 
several of them dead upon the ground, took a great 
number of prisoners, and obtained possession of their 
horses and arms. When the news of this succfess reached 
the Moslem army, cries of the ta/t/i/ and the takbir {There 
is but one God I God is almighty I) rose on every side. 
The Sultan mounted and went to meet the brave men 
who had fought for the faith. I was on duty at that time 
and went with him. We went as far as the hill {tell) of 


Kisan/ where we met the foremost of the band, and the 
Sultan halted there to await the others. Everyone con- 
gratulated these brave warriors, and thanked them for 
their successful enterprise. The Sultan reviewed the 
prisoners, and ascertained their rank and position. 
Amongst them was the leader of the body of troops 
that the French king had sent out to the assistance of 
the besiegers ; the king's treasurer was also among the 
prisoners. The Sultan returned to the camp filled with 
joy, and ordered the prisoners to be brought before him. 
He also commanded the herald to proclaim that all those 
who had taken captives should bring them in person 
before him. He received all who had high rank amongst 
their countrymen, and who were held in good esteem by 
them, with every mark of respect, and clad them in robes 
of honour. He gave a furred robe of the first class to the 
leader of the King of France's troops ; and on all the 
others, without exception, he bestowed a Jerkh fur, for 
they were suffering greatly from the cold, which was at that 
time very severe. He ordered a banquet to be spread 
before them, of which they all partook, and commanded 
a tent to be pitched for them close to his own. He 
constantly showed them marks of great kindness, and 
sometimes invited their leader to his table. By his orders 
they were supplied with horses to carry them to Damascus, 
and they were treated with the greatest respect. They 
received permission to write to their friends, and to send 
to the (besiegers') camp for their clothes and any other 
things they might need. They availed themselves of this 
privilege, and departed for Damascus. 

1 Tell Ktsdn is i^ miles E. of D'auk, and 5^ miles S.E. of Acre. 




Winter had now come on, and the sea was tossed by 
storms ; it was therefore certain that the enemy would not 
engage in a pitched battle ; we knew also that the heavy 
rains would prevent their making any progress in the 
siege of the city. Therefore the Sultan permitted his 
troops to return to their respective countries, to rest 
and give their horses time to recover before the season 
arrived to recommence fighting. The first of the chiefs 
to depart was Tmad ed-Din Zenghi, Lord of Sinjar, with 
whose impatience to obtain leave we have already 
acquainted the reader. He set out on the 15th of the 
month of Shawal (November 15, 1190). He was followed 
on the same day by his nephew Sinjar Shah, Lord of 
Jezirat Ibn 'Omar. They had both received from the 
Sultan more marks of favour, such as robes of honour, 
rich presents, and curiosities, than that prince had ever 
bestowed on any other chief. 'Ala ed-Din, son of the 
Lord of Mosul, set out on the ist of the month of 
Zu el-K'ada (November 30) laden with honours, precious 
gifts, and rare and curious things. El-Melek el-Mozaffer 
Taki ed-Din and el-Melek ez-Zaher postponed their de- 
parture until the following year, 587 of the Hejira 
(1191 A.D.) ; the latter set out on the 9th of Moharrem 
(February 6), and el-Melek el-Mozaffer started from the 
camp on the 3rd of Safer (March 2). There then remained 
with the Sultan but a very few emirs and his especial ka/ka 
(guard). In the month of Zu el-K*ada, the previous year, 
the Sultan had received a visit from Zulf Endaz.^ He 
^ Some copies read Zulfetdar. 


treated him with great honour, and gave him entertainment 
suitable to his rank ; the day he arrived he had a splendid 
banquet set before him, and conversed with him in the 
most friendly fashion. The object of this man's visit was 
to obtain a decree for his reinstatement in property he had 
formerly held in the provinces of Nisiba and Khabur, 
and of which he had been wrongfully deprived. The Sultan 
signed an order for their restoration, clad him with a robe 
of honour, and treated him with every mark of good-will. 
Zulf Endaz left us filled with joy and full of gratitude for 
the Sultan's goodness. 



The sea had now become very tempestuous, and the be- 
siegers, being thereby prevented from employing their ships 
against the city, beached all that were left of their galleys. 
The Sultan then devoted his attention to introducing a 
fresh garrison into Acre, and stocking the city with pro- 
visions and supplies, with money and stores of war. He 
also took measures for the relief of the officers, who were 
worn out by their long imprisonment in the city, and 
made loud complaints of their sufferings and fatigue, for 
they had been obliged to watch night after night, and had 
fought night and day without cessation. He appointed 
Emir Seif ed-Din 'Ali el-Meshtub head of the new 
garrison ; and that officer entered the city on the i6th of 
Moharrem in the year 587 (February 13, 1191). On the 
same day the retiring commandant, Emir Hossam ed-Din 
Abu el-Heija, with his comrades and all the other officers, 
left the castle, as Seif ed-Din was entering the city at the 


head of a large body of officers and men. By the Sultan's 
orders every man who went into the city had to take with 
him a year's provisions. El-Melek el-' Adel repaired to Haifa^ 
with his troops ; this place is on the seashore, and he sent 
ships thence to Acre laden with supplies. He remained 
there to enlist volunteers for the garrison at Acre, and to 
guard the victuals and supplies destined for that place 
from any attack by the enemy. Seven ships laden with 
corn, provisions and money, which had been fitted out a 
long time since in Egypt by the Sultan's orders, had gone 
to Acre on the 2nd of the month of Zu el-Hijja in the 
previous year (December 31). One of these ships had 
struck on a rock close to the harbour, and the whole of 
the garrison had gone down to the seashore to endeavour 
to save her cargo. The enemy took advantage of this 
opportunity to make a sharp assault on the city from the 
land side. They came close up to the walls, and began 
scaling them with a single ladder. The people of the city 
ran up at once and killed a number of their men, forcing 
them to give up their enterprise and retreat. The ships 
we have just mentioned were so tossed by the wind and 
waves that they struck one upon another, and were all 
lost, with the cargoes they had brought, and, it is said, not 
less than sixty men. These ships contained a great 
quantity of corn that would have been sufficient to pro- 
vision the city for a whole year. This disaster was a great 
blow to the spirits of the Moslems, and a bitter vexation 
to the Sultan. This was the first omen of the coming fall 
of the city. On the night preceding Sunday, the 7th of 
Zu el-Hijja (January 5, 1191) a large part of the wall of 
the city fell on the outworks and destroyed them also for 
some distance ; this was the second omen of the fall of the 

' On the south of the bay of Acre, 9 miles from that city. 


city. Encouraged by this accident, the enemy poured 
towards the breach in great multitudes ; but the garrison, 
full of courage, resisted them most effectually, standing in 
the breach like a living rampart. All the masons, artificers 
and workmen in the city were collected together at once, 
and whilst they laboured to close the breach and rebuild 
the wall, they were protected against the enemy by a body 
of archers and mangonel-men. In the course of a few 
nights the work was completed, and the wall was better 
built than it had been in the first instance. 



A GREAT number of deserters had come over to us, driven 
by want of food to leave the Frank camp. These men 
said to the Sultan : ' If you will supply us with ships and 
smaller craft, we will protect you against the enemy by 
sea, and we will share our booty in equal parts with the 
Moslems.' The Sultan gave them a bark {barki\s) a small 
kind of vessel, in which they embarked ; they then fell in 
with some merchantmen, whose cargoes consisted chiefly 
of ingots of silver and silversmiths' work for the enemy's 
camp. They boarded these ships and succeeded in 
capturing them after a sharp fight. On the 13th of 
Zu el-Hijja (January 11, 1191) of the aforesaid year, they 
brought the rich booty and the prisoners they had taken 
to the Sultan. I was present when they were admitted, 
and remarked amongst the articles they had brought a 
table of silver, on which was (a casket inlaid with ?) the 
same metal. The Sultan left them the whole, reserving 


nothing for himself. The Moslems rejoiced to see how 
God had inflicted a defeat on the enemy by means of their 
own men. 



The winter season, which was attended with incessant 
rain and frequent changes of temperature, made the plain 
exceedingly unhealthy and caused heavy mortality amongst 
the Franks. In addition to this, scarcity of food grew 
greater every day, and the sea, on which they depended 
for supplies of provisions from all parts, was now im- 
passable. Every day from one to two hundred people 
died in the camp ; the number of deaths was even 
greater if some reports speak true. The son of the king 
of the Germans fell grievously sick, and this, combined 
with an internal complaint from which he was suffering, 
carried him off. He died on the 22nd of Zu el-Hijja, 586 
(January 20, 1191). The Franks mourned greatly for 
him, and lighted for themselves great fires in all directions, 
to the number of two or three in each tent. This gave the 
whole camp the appearance of being on fire. The joy 
displayed by the Moslems, when they heard of the prince's 
death, was as great as the grief evinced by the Franks. 
The enemy also lost another of their leaders, named Count 
Baliat.i Count Henry also fell sick, and at one time lay 
at death's door. On the 24th of the same month we 
captured two of their barks, whose crews numbered more 

1 Schultens considers Ba/i'dt to stand for ' Thibault.' The Oxford 
MS. reads Ba7iidt. It is perhaps possible that Kiindbaliat may 
stand for ' Canterbury ': for Baldwin, Archbishop of Canterbury, fought 
as a soldier at Acre, and died about this time in the camp. 


than fifty men, and on the 25th we took a large bark, 
which, amongst other things, contained a surcoat (or robe) 
covered with pearl embroidery, belonging to the wardrobe 
of the king (of the Germans ?). I heard that his nephew, 
his sister's son, was on board this bark, and was taken 



The name of the Asad ed-Din, who is the subject of this 
chapter, was Shirkuh ; he was son of Nasr ed-Din Muham- 
mad, and grandson of Asad ed-Din Shirkuh senior. He 
held the principality of Emesa. The Sultan had given 
him instructions to keep strict watch over the Franks in 
Tripoli, and to provide for the safety of the Moslems who 
dwelt in that part of the country. He received information 
that the people of Tripoli had sent all their droves (horses, 
oxen, and baggage-animals) to grass in the plain close to 
the city ; he therefore laid his plans, and set out with his 
troops to carry these animals off* He left the city quite 
unknown to the enemy, fell on their droves, and took four 
hundred horses and one hundred oxen. About forty of 
these horses died, but the remainder were brought back 
in good condition. He returned home without having lost 
a single man. The Sultan received his letter announcing 
his success on the 4th of Safer, 587 (March 3, 1191). The 
previous night one of the enemy's ships had been driven 
ashore by the wind, and our people, seeing its plight, went 
down and took prisoners the whole of the crew, which 
was a large one. 




On the night preceding the first day of the month Rabi'a I. 
(March 29), the Moslems in Acre made a sortie, killed a 
great number of the besiegers, and carried off about a 
dozen women from their camp. On the 3rd of the same 
month, the advanced guard, which was that day composed 
of troops from the Sultan's halka, was furiously attacked 
by a strong body of the enemy. The besiegers had several 
men killed, one of whom was said to be of high rank. 
The Moslems lost only one man, named Karakush, a ser- 
vant in the Sultan's service, who had distinguished himself 
by his valour on more than one occasion. The Sultan was 
informed that a detachment of the enemy's army frequently 
took advantage of our distance from their camp to leave 
their quarters and disperse over the plain ; on the 9th of 
the month, therefore, he himself selected a considerable 
number of men from the ranks of the Moslem army, whom 
he put under the command of his brother, el-Melek el-'Adel, 
with instructions to take up his position in ambush behind 
a tell, close to the scene of the action that bears that prince's 
name. The Sultan concealed himself also behind Tell el- 
'Aiadiya, taking with him several of the princes of his 
family — to wit, el-Melek el-Mozaffer Taki ed-Din, Nasr 
ed-Din Muhammad (Taki ed-Din's son), el-Melek el-Afdal 
(the Sultan's son), and the young princes (his) sons — to 
wit, el-Melek el-Ashref Muhammad, el-Melek el-Mo'azzem 
Turan-Shah, and el-Melek es-Saleh Ism'ail. Amongst the 
men of the turban (doctors of law) that accompanied him 
were el-Kadi el-Fadel and the officers of the Chancery ; I 
myself was of the party. A few of our warriors, mounted 


on good horses, advanced towards the enemy and dis- 
charged a flight of arrows at them, so as to entice them 
out into the plain ; but they would not leave their camp, 
having probably received information from some traitor of 
the real object of this manoeuvre. Nevertheless, this day 
did not pass without furnishing us with some cause for 
rejoicing ; for forty-live Franks, who had been taken pri- 
soner at Beirut, were brought in to the Sultan. On this 
occasion I witnessed the great tenderness of his heart, 
beyond anything ever seen. Amongst the prisoners was a 
very aged man who had lost all his teeth, and who could 
hardly move at all. The Sultan asked him through his 
interpreter why, being so old, he had come to this country, 
and how far off his home lay. He replied : ' My home is 
several months' journey away ; I only came to this country 
to make a pilgrimage to the Church of the Resurrection ' 
(el-Komama). The Sultan was so touched by this answer 
that he restored the old man to liberty, and supplied him 
with a horse to carry him to the enemy's camp. The 
Sultan's younger sons asked his permission to kill these 
prisoners, which he forbade them to do. As they had 
made their request through me, I begged him to tell me 
the reason of his refusal, and he replied : ' They shall not 
become accustomed in their youth to the shedding of 
blood and laugh at it, for they as yet know no difference 
between a Moslem and an infidel.' Observe the prince's 
humanity, his wisdom and moderation ! El-Melek el 'Adel, 
having given up all hope of enticing the enemy out into the 
plain, returned to the camp that same evening. 




The sea now became navigable once more, the weather 
cleared, and the time drew near for the arrival of reinforce- 
ments to both armies, to enable them to carry on the war. 
The first to join us was 'Alem ed-Din Suleiman Ibn Jender, 
an emir in el-Melek ez-Zaher's service. He was an old 
man, and enjoyed a wide-spread fame, having made his 
mark by the wisdom of his counsels and the bravery he 
had displayed on many a field. The Sultan thought very 
highly of this chief, who was one of his old companions in 
arms. The next to arrive was Mejed ed-Din, son of *Izz 
ed-Din Ferrukh Shah, and Lord of B'albek. Other bodies 
of Moslem troops came in one after another from different 
parts of the country. The enemy, on their side, took every 
opportunity of informing our advanced guard and the 
people who visited their camp that they were expecting 
the King of France to arrive very shortly. This monarch 
held very high rank amongst the Christians ; he com- 
manded the respect of their most powerful princes ; all the 
besiegers' forces would have to put themselves under his 
orders as soon as he arrived, and his authority would be 
universally acknowledged. This king arrived at last with 
six ships laden with provisions and as many horses as he 
had considered it necessary to bring. He was accompanied 
by his principal officers. His arrival took place on Satur- 
day, the 23rd of Rabi'a I., of the above year (April 20, 
A.D. 1 191). 




The king had brought with him a large white falcon 
(fit., kite), of enormous size and a rare species ; I had never 
seen one so beautiful. The king set great store by the 
bird, and was very fond of it. This falcon one day escaped 
from his hand and took flight, and instead of returning at 
his master's repeated calls, flew off, and perched on the 
wall of Acre. Our people took it and sent it to the 
Sultan. The flight of the bird to the Moslems gave rise to 
great rejoicing, and its capture seemed to them to augur 
well. The Franks offered a thousand dinars as the price 
of its ransom, but we did not even send them an answer. 
After this arrived Count (Philip) of Flanders, a prince of 
high rank among them, and of great renown. It was he 
who laid siege to Hamah and Harim the year (we were 
defeated) at Ramla. On the 12th of Rabi'a II., we were 
informed by letter from Antioch that a body of deserters 
from the Franks, who had been put in possession of several 
barks, with the view of despoiling the Christians by sea, 
had landed in the island of Cyprus on a certain feast-day. 
A great number of the inhabitants were in the church, 
which was close to the sea-shore. The pirates took part in 
their service, and then threw themselves upon the congre- 
gation, taking them all prisoners — the women as well as 
the men — and dragging the priest also along with them. 
They put th^m on board their boats and carried them to 
Laodicea. They had taken great store of treasure and 
twenty-seven women. They say that each of the men 
engaged in the adventure received four thousand pieces of 
silver, current money, as his share of the plunder. A 



short time after this, on the 17th of the month Rabi'a II., 
Bedr ed-Din, shihna (or governor) of Damascus, came into 
the camp. Our men fell upon the flock of sheep belonging 
to the enemy, and carried off twenty of them ; their horse 
and foot came out after them, but did not recover any of 
their property. 



The king of England was very powerful, very brave, and 
full of resolution. He had distinguished himself in many 
a battle, and displayed the greatest boldness in all his 
campaigns. As regards his kingdom and rank, he was 
inferior to the king of France, but he outstripped him in 
wealth, in valour, and in fame as a soldier. It was reported 
of him that on his arrival in Cyprus he made up his mind 
not to proceed any further until he had taken the island 
and reduced it to submission. He therefore disembarked 
and commenced hostilities, whilst the prince of the island 
collected a great number of people together to oppose the 
invader, and made a desperate defence of his dominions.^ 
The king of England then asked help from the Franks at 
Acre, and King Geoffrey {sicj' sent him his brother at the 
head of a hundred and sixty knights. Meanwhile, the 
Franks remained under the walls of Acre, awaiting the 
result of the war between the two parties. On the last day 
of the month Rabi'a II. we received a letter from Beirilt 
informing us of the capture of five transports belonging to 

^ King Richard I. defeated Isaac Comnenos (who called himself 
Emperor of Cyprus, and who was a nephew of Theodore, wife of 
Baldwin III.) on May 6, 1191. 

2 De Vinsauf says that King Guy himself came to assist in the 
conquest of Cyprus. 


the king of England's fleet, laden with men and women, 
provisions and wood, machines of war and other things, 
besides about forty horses. This was a great piece of good 
fortune for the Moslems, and the cause of much rejoicing. 
On the 4th of Jornada I. the enemy attacked the city and 
put seven mangonels in position. Letters came in from 
Acre beseeching us in the most urgent manner to send 
them help, and begging us to so occupy the enemy that 
they should be forced to discontinue the assault. The 
Sultan therefore informed his troops that he had decided 
to advance closer to the enemy, and to invest their camp 
more completely. The following day, in pursuance of this 
determination, he drew up his troops in their appointed 
order and sent out spies to ascertain the enemy's exact 
position, and to see if they had posted men in hiding in 
their trenches. They returned with the information that 
the trenches were quite empty. Upon this he set out with 
a few of his friends and memluks in the direction of the 
enemy's trenches, and climbed a hill called Tell el-Fodul,^ 
that lay close to their camp, and from the top of which he 
could see all that was going on there. He could plainly 
distinguish which mangonels were at work and which were 
lying idle. He then returned to our camp. I had at- 
tended him (on this ride). The next morning some thieves 
brought him a child, three months old, that they had stolen 
from its mother. 

T One of the hillocks in the plain E. of Acre. 





The Moslems kept a number of thieves whose business it 
was to carry off people from the enemy's camp. On one 
of their nightly expeditions they seized a little nursling of 
three months, and brought it to the Sultan's tent, the rule 
being that they should bring all they had taken to the 
prince, who gave it back at once into their hands. When 
the child's mother found that her child had disappeared, 
she spent the whole night in weeping and lamentations, 
and in seeking assistance. When the princes of the Franks 
heard what had happened, they said to the woman : ' The 
Sultan is very compassionate ; we will give you permission 
to leave the camp and repair to him, to ask for your 
child ; he is certain to give it back to you.' She there- 
upon left the camp and went up to the (Moslem) ad- 
vanced guard, to whom she told her story. They brought 
her to the Sultan, who was on horseback and attended by 
his suite, of whom I was one. She threw herself on her 
face upon the ground and began weeping and lamenting. 
When the Sultan heard the cause of her grief he was 
affected even to tears, and commanded the child to be 
brought. When he was told that it had been sold in the 
market, he commanded that the purchaser should .be re- 
imbursed the price he had paid, and the child taken away 
from him. He remained where he was until the child was 
brought, and then gave it back to the poor mother, who 
pressed it to her breast whilst the tears ran down her 
cheeks. It was such an affecting sight that all who wit- 

^ Our author has already given us this account on p. 41. 


nessed it were moved to tears. Then, by the Sultan's 
command, she and her child were put on a mare and taken 
back to the enemy's camp. Here is another instance of the 
tenderness he felt for the whole of the human race. Great 
God, who madest him merciful, grant him an ample share 
of Thy mercy out of Thy greatness and loving-kindness ! 
Even his enemies bore witness to his kindness and tender- 
ness of heart, as the following verse testifies : 

' For goodness even rivals prize, 
And who the just man's right denies ?' 

Zaher ed-Din Ibn el-Bolenkeri, one of the chief emirs of 
Mosul, came to the camp this same day. He had left the 
service of the princes of that city and wished to enter the 
Sultan's army. Very soon after Salah ed-Din's return to 
the camp he heard that the enemy had renewed their 
assault on Acre. He therefore set out on horseback for 
the city, but found that the fight was over before he came 
up, for night intervening had separated the combatants. 



On the morning of Tuesday, the 9th of the month 
Jomada I. (June 4), the Sultan heard that the Franks had 
set up their mangonels and were pressing the city very 
hard ; he therefore commanded the herald (Jawish) to call 
(to arms). He then mounted his horse, and advanced 
towards el-Kharruba at the head of his infantry and 
cavalry, the latter having lost as little time as he in getting 
into their saddles. Then he reinforced the advanced guard 
by a detachment of troops that he sent forward. As the 


besiegers would not come out of their camp, but continued 
their assault on the city, he rushed on their camp, which 
was thus completely hemmed in, and fought a hand to 
hand combat. The attack was continued till past mid-day, 
when the enemy, abandoning their hope of carrying the 
city, suspended operations in that direction and returned 
to their camp. The Sultan sought shelter from the sun in 
a small tent that was pitched for him close at hand, and, 
after saying the mid-day prayer, he rested there for the 
space of an hour. He had previously sent reinforcements 
to the advanced guard, and ordered his troops back to the 
camp to get a little rest. I was then on duty. Whilst we 
were recovering from our fatigue, a messenger came in 
from the advanced guard to report that as soon as the enemy 
saw that the Sultan had withdrawn, they had recommenced 
their assault of the city even more furiously than before. 
The Sultan dispatched an order recalling his troops, 
bidding them advance, regiment by regiment, to the 
quarter on which the enemy had collected their forces, 
and remain there under arms for the night. He remained 
on the spot himself to share their toils. Towards the end 
of the day, which was Tuesday, I took my departure from 
his tent and returned to the camp, my turn of duty being 
over. The Sultan spent the night with his troops, who re- 
mained drawn up in order of battle. During the night one 
detachment was posted close to the enemy's trenches, to 
keep them from leaving their camp. On the following 
morning, which was Wednesday, the loth of the month 
(June 5), the Sultan removed to a position facing the 
enemy, on Tell el-*Ayddlya, and took up his quarters in 
a little tent that had been pitched as a shelter for him. 
Throughout the day he maintained a steady and un- 
interrupted attack on the besiegers, so as to keep their 
hands full, and prevent their acting against the city, and 


he went incessantly from rank to rank, urging them to 
fight bravely in God's cause, and assuring them of ultimate 
success. When the enemy saw the fury of his attack, they 
grew apprehensive for the safety of their camp ; and, to 
prevent its being carried by assault, they suspended 
hostilities against the city, and provided for the defence of 
the trenches and tents. Upon this the Sultan returned to 
the camp he had established on Tell el-'Ayadtya, leaving 
detachments behind to keep watch over the enemy's 
trenches, and report to him from hour to hour whatever 
might happen. 



We had already been informed of the energy with which 
the enemy carried on the assault and endeavoured to fill 
up the ditches. They even threw the bodies of their dead 
horses into the moat, and went so far as to cast their own 
dead in. All these things came to our knowledge by 
means of letters, which we constantly received from our 
co-religionists in the city. These people had been divided 
into four sections : the first used to go down into the moat 
and cut to pieces the bodies of the animals that had been 
thrown in, in order that they might thus be the more easily 
carried away ; the second division carried off the pieces 
and cast them into the sea ; the third maintained a con- 
stant discharge upon the enemy to protect the two first 
sections and enable them to perform their tasks ; the fourth 
worked the mangonels and provided for the defence of the 
walls. The garrison were so worn out with exertion and 
fatigue that they sent incessant complaints to the Sultan. 
Indeed, they suffered more than any other body of troops 


has ever done, and no amount of courage was of any avail. 
Nevertheless they bore up with considerable patience, and 
God is with the patient. Meanwhile the Sultan never 
ceased attacking the enemy. He fought them continually 
night and day, either in person, or by means of his officers 
and sons, with the view of distracting their attention and 
preventing them from prosecuting the siege. But the 
besiegers' mangonels were brought to bear on 'Ain el- 
Bakar ;^ stones from these engines fell on the city night 
and day, and the damage sustained by the (great) tower^ 
was plainly visible. Whenever the enemy were making 
preparations to renew their assault on the city, the Sultan 
pressed right up to their trenches on the other side. At 
last one of the Franks came out of their camp and looked 
about for someone to speak to. The Sultan was informed 
of this, and made answer : * Tell them, if they have any- 
thing to ask, to send us one of their men ; we have nothing, 
for our part, to ask at their hands, and nothing whatever 
to do with them.' The two sides were still engaged in 
fighting when the king of England arrived. 



The king of England arrived in the Frank camp on 
Saturday, the 13th of the month Jomada I. (June 8, 1191), 
after having conquered the island of Cyprus, and having 
succeeded against its lord. The news of his coming spread 
great terror. He brought five-and-twenty galleys with him, 

1 'Ain el-Bakar means ' the ox-pool.' It was probably inside the 

2 The * Cursed Tower' at the N.E. corner of the outer wall of Acre. 


filled with men, arms and stores. The Franks were filled 
with so great a joy at his arrival that they lit huge and 
terrible fires that night in their camp — a sure sign of the 
important support he had brought them. Their leaders had 
oftentimes boasted to us that he would come, and held his 
arrival as a menace over our heads ; and now, according 
to the people who frequented their camp, they expected, 
the very moment he landed, to see him fulfil their dearest 
wish of pushing forward with the siege of the city. This 
prince, indeed, was justly distinguished for his good judg- 
ment and wide experience, for his extreme daring and 
insatiable ambition. Therefore, when the Moslems heard 
of his arrival, they were filled with terror and alarm. The 
Sultan, nevertheless, received the news undisturbed, for he 
counted upon God's favour and protection, and manifested 
the purity of his motives in warring against the Franks. 



On the i6th a great ship, bringing engines of war, arms, 
provisions, and a large body of troops from Beirut, was 
approaching the city. She had been equipped by the 
Sultan's orders at Beirut, and had sailed from that place 
with a great number of soldiers on board, and instructions 
to run the blockade and make the harbour of Acre. The 
soldiers on board numbered six hundred and fifty. The 
king of England fell in with this vessel,^ and sent his 

^ According to De Vinsauf this ship was captured while the English 
were on the way from Tyre to Acre, which would be before June 8. 
The month is not named in this chapter. 


galleys to attack her. They surrounded her, I have been 
told, to the number of forty, and a desperate encounter 
ensued. Providence ordained that the wind should fall. 
The enemy lost a number of men in this fight. The crew 
of our vessel were overmatched by the superior force of the 
enemy, and seeing that there was no chance of anything 
but defeat, the captain, Y'akub, a native of Aleppo, and a 
brave and experienced soldier, said, ' By God ! we will die 
with honour, nor shall they get anything from this ship !' 
and he stove in the sides of his ship ; everything on board 
— men, engines of war, provisions, etc., all sank into the 
waves, and nothing fell into the hands of the enemy. The 
Moslems were overwhelmed by the news of this catas- 
trophe, but the Sultan heard the tidings with perfect resig- 
nation to God's will and with exemplary calm, and God 
wastes not the hire of those who do well (Kuran ix. 121). 



The enemy had built an enormous tower, four stories 
high ; the first story was constructed of wood, the second 
of lead, the third of iron, and the fourth of copper. It 
stood higher than the wall of the city, and held men at 
arms. They had brought this tower up to within about 
five cubits of the ramparts, as far as we could judge from 
our position ; then the besieged began to throw naphtha 
on it, and continued to do so without ceasing night and 
day, until, by God's grace, the engine was set on fire. 
This success compensated for the loss of the ship from 
Beirtat, which occurred the same day. 




On Friday, the 19th of this month, the enemy made a 
vigorous assault on the city, and attacked it at close 
quarters ; but the garrison had previously arranged with 
the Sultan to beat a drum when the enemy attacked 
them, and they now beat it. The Sultan's drum replied, 
and the army got to horse and rushed down on the camp, 
attacking the enemy in the rear. A number of Moslems 
leapt into the trenches, rushed into the tents, and carried 
off the cooking-pots and what was in them. Part of the 
booty taken in the camp was brought to the Sultan and 
laid before him in my presence. They feasted their 
swords (with the blood of the infidels) until the enemy 
became aware that their camp had been invaded. They 
then desisted from their attack on the city and faced 
about to give battle to our army. A new battle began 
in this quarter, which raged till noon, when both sides 
returned to their respective camps, equally worn out by 
fatigue and the heat. On Monday the 23rd the drum 
sounded the alarm once more from the city, and the 
Sultan's answered it as before. In the combat that 
ensued the enemy bent all their fury on the city, thinking 
we should not dare to attack them in their camp ; but the 
Moslem troops promptly undeceived them. They made 
their way once more right into the tents and carried off 
great spoil. The besiegers were roused by the alarm-calls 
and came back to oppose our men, great numbers of whom 
they found within the trenches and walls of the camp. A 
desperate encounter followed, in which two Moslems 


were killed and many wounded. A very remarkable thing 
occurred this day. An old man, a native of Mazanderan, 
and a person of some consequence, had arrived this very 
morning to take part in the Holy War, and, finding that a 
fight was going on, he obtained the Sultan's leave to join 
the men engaged ; he made a furious charge against the 
enemy and fell a martyr at once. When the Franks found 
that the Moslems had penetrated within their trenches and 
walls, they were filled with fury, their cavalry sprang to 
horse, and, accompanied by the foot-soldiers, rushed from 
their trenches and charged the Moslems like one man. 
Our troops stood firm, and did not stir from their position ; 
then both sides engaged in a desperate fight. When the 
enemy saw the calm bravery displayed by the Moslems, 
they took advantage of an interval to obtain the Sultan's 
permission to send him an envoy. This messenger went 
first to el-Melek el-'Adel, and got him and el-Melek 
el-Afdel to accompany him to the prince. He then 
delivered his message, which was to express the king 
of England's desire for an interview with the Sultan. 
The Sultan, without a moment's hesitation, made answer 
in the following terms : * It is not customary for kings to 
meet, unless they have previously laid the foundations of 
a treaty ; for after they have spoken together and given 
one another the tokens of mutual confidence that are 
natural in such circumstances, it is not seemly for them to 
make war upon one another. It is therefore absolutely 
essential that the preliminaries should be arranged first of 
all, and that a trustworthy interpreter should act as our 
intermediary to explain to each of us what the other says. 
As soon as the preliminaries are settled, the interview, 
please God, shall take place.' On Saturday, the 28th of 
the month, the enemy's cavalry and infantry sallied out of 
the camp and attacked that division of our army which 


was encamped on the shore to the north of the city. As 
soon as the Sultan was informed of this movement, he 
sprang- into the saddle, his troops followed him, and a fight 
ensued between the two armies. Bedawin and Kurds were 
killed on our side, whilst the enemy suffered great loss. 
One prisoner in full armour, on horseback, was brought 
before the Sultan. The battle raged till night fell and 
separated the combatants. On Sunday, the 29th, a strong 
party of the enemy's foot advanced along the bank of the 
Nahr el-Halu, where they fell in with a detachment of our 
advanced guard. A smart encounter ensued, in which the 
enemy took a Moslem prisoner, put him to death, and 
burned his body. The Moslems on their side did the 
same with a Frank prisoner. I myself saw the light of 
the two piles that were burning at the same time. We 
constantly received news from the people in the city ; they 
besought us to occupy the enemy's attention, and com- 
plained of being obliged to fight both night and day. 
They told us they were utterly exhausted, being forced to 
be on the walls without any rest, to oppose the attacks of 
the enemy, which had been incessant since the arrival of 
the king of England. After this that prince' fell sick of 
an illness of which he nearly died ; the king of France 
also was suffering from a wound, but this only increased 
the arrogance and obstinacy of the besiegers. 

The sister of the king of England had two servants 
who were secretly Moslems, whom she had taken into her 
service in Sicily ; her husband had been king of that 
island, 1 and on his death her brother, passing through 
Sicily, took her with him and escorted her to the army. 
Her two servants fled to the Moslem army. The Sultan 

^ Joan, sister of Richard I., married William of Sicily in 1177. He 
died in 1190. Sicily contained a large Moslem population under its 
Norman Kings. 


gave them a most kindly welcome, and loaded them with 
marks of his favour. 




The marquis was afraid that if he remained (where he was) 
he would be seized, and his city given to the ex-king, who 
had been taken prisoner by the Sultan, to compensate 
him for the captivity he had suffered whilst upholding 
the Messiah's religion with his sword. Feeling sure that 
this was the course things would take, he fled to Tyre on 
Monday, the 30th Jornada I. Priests were sent to bring 
him back, but he would not listen to them, and set out 
by ship for that city. His departure was a great loss to 
the Franks, for he was distinguished for his good judgment, 
experience, and valour. 



On the 30th of the month Jomada I. the contingent from 
Sinjar reached the camp, under Mojahed ed-Din Berenkash, 
a religious and well-informed n>an, very zealous for the 
war. The Sultan went out to meet him and do him 
honour ; he received him in his own tent and loaded him 
with tokens of esteem, after which he assigned him a posi- 
tion in the left wing of the army. The arrival of this chief 
gave him the greatest satisfaction. After this there came 
in a strong detachment from the Egyptian army under 


A'lem ed-Din Korji Seif ed-Din Sonkor^ the dewdddr 
(Secretary of State), and a number of others of high rank. 
Then came 'Ala ed-Din, prince of Mosul, at the head of 
the troops from that city. The Sultan bade him welcome 
at el-Kharruba, and received him with the greatest honour. 
This contingent remained at that place until the following 
morning, which was the 2nd of Jomada II. ; their leader 
then paraded his troops in front of the enemy, and the 
Sultan reviewed them. 'Ala ed-Din was lodged first of all 
in the Sultan's tent ; Salah ed-Din sent him the most 
magnificent presents, and furnished him with most sump- 
tuous appointments suited to the rank of so great a prince. 
He then gave him a position in the right wing of the 
army. On the 3rd of the same month a second detach- 
ment came in from Egypt. The Franks were at this time 
so much concerned at the increasing gravity of the king 
of England's illness that they even discontinued for a 
while their attacks on the city. This was a mercy decreed 
by God, for the besieged garrison were in a most exhausted 
condition and reduced to their last gasp, as the mangonels 
had beaten down the walls to no higher than a man's 
height. Meanwhile the Arab thieves (in the Sultan's pay) 
used to steal into the besiegers' camp and carry off their 
goods. They used even to make prisoners without striking 
a blow, and this was the method they used : they would 
enter a man's tent whilst he was asleep, and having placed 
a dagger at his throat, would wake him up and make him 
understand by signs that if he said a word they would dis- 
patch him at once ; then they would carry him out of the 
camp and bring him to our army. The prisoner did not 
dare to open his mouth. This they succeeded in doing on 
several occasions. When the contingents from all parts 
had come in, one by one, the Moslem army was brought 
up to its full strength. 




I RELATED above that an ambassador had been sent by 
the king of England to solicit an interview with the Sultan, 
and that the Sultan had excused himself. Some time 
afterwards the same messenger arrived bringing the very- 
same message. He first had an interview with el-Melek 
el-'Adel, and that prince communicated his message to the 
Sultan. It was decided that the king should have per- 
mission to come out (of his camp), and that the meeting 
should take place on the plain, surrounded by the armies, 
and that an interpreter should accompany the two 
sovereigns. The messenger returned with the answer, and 
it was some days before he came to the camp again, on 
account of the illness from which (his master) was suffering. 
After this a report spread about that the (Frank) princes 
had presented themselves in a body (before the king), and 
expressed strong disapproval of his proposed interview, on 
the ground that it would imperil the Christian cause. 
Nevertheless, very soon afterwards the same messenger 
came (to us) once more, with the following message : * Do 
not believe the reports that have been spread as to the 
cause of my enforced delay : I am answerable to myself 
alone for what I may do : I am master of my own 
actions, and no one has any authority over me. But, 
during the last few days, I have been prevented from doing 
anything at all by sickness ; that alone has caused the 
delay. It is the custom of kings, when they happen to be 
near one another, to send each other mutual presents and 
gifts. Now I have in my possession a gift worthy of 


the Sultan's acceptance, and I ask permission to send it 
to him.' El-Melek el-'Adel replied as follows: * He may 
send this present provided he will accept a gift of equal 
value from us.' The messenger agreed to this condi- 
tion, and added : * Our present might be of falcons from 
beyond the sea, but just now they are weak, and it would 
be a good thing if you could send us a few birds and fowls ; 
we would give them to our falcons, and they would revive, 
so that we could bring them to you.' El-Melek el-'Adel, 
v/ho knew full well what tone to take with them, replied 
jokingly : ' I suppose the king wants some fowls and 
chickens for his own use, and this is the means he adopts 
to procure them.' The conversation went on for some 
time, and at last the messenger asked : ' What do you want 
at our hands ? Have you anything to say ? Speak, so 
that we may know what it is.' El-Melek made answer": 
' It was not we who made advances to you : you came to 
us ; if you have anything to say, it is for you to speak and 
tell us your views ; we are prepared to listen/ The inter- 
view then came to an end, and we had no further commu- 
nications until the 6th of Jomada H., when the king of 
England's ambassador came to visit the Sultan, bringing 
with him a Moghrabi Moslem, whom they had kept in cap- 
tivity for a long time. The Sultan, to whom this man was 
given as a present, received him with the utmost kindness 
and with many tokens of goodwill. The envoy received 
a robe of honour and returned to his master. The object of 
these frequent visits from the ambassador was to ascertain 
the state of our spirits, and to learn whether we were 
inclined to resist or give way ; we, on our side, were 
induced to receive the enemy's messages by the very same 
motive that prompted them. 




The enemy continued their assaults on the city, and 
played on the walls incessantly with their mangonels, until 
all the stonework and structure of the walls was ruined. 
The people of the city were worn out by fatigue and long 
watching, for there was but a handful of them, and it was 
only with difficulty that they were able to bear up against 
the multitude of their adversaries and the continuous work. 
Numbers of them passed several nights in succession with- 
out closing their eyes, taking no rest night or day, whilst the 
besiegers, who hemmed them in, were in great force, and 
could relieve each other in their attack on the city. The 
garrison had been obliged to divide their reduced num- 
bers, so as to provide for the protection of the walls 
and ditches, to work the mangonels, and to furnish crews M 
for the ships and galleys. When the enemy were informed 
of this melancholy state of affairs, and of the extent 
to which the fortifications had suffered, they began to 
assault the city on all sides ; their battalions relieved each 
other without interruption, fresh men advancing to the 
fight whilst the others rested. On the 7th of the month 
they renewed the attack with the greatest fury, bringing 
all their forces, both infantry and cavalry, to bear on the 
walls of the city. They took the precaution of manning 
the walls that protected their trenches, and they kept 
troops there night and day. As soon as the Sultan knew 
what was going forward (he was informed of the state of 
things both by the report of eye-witnesses and by the 



rolling of the drum, the signal agreed upon between the 
garrison and himself), he mounted his horse, and, followed 
by his army, rushed down upon the enemy. A desperate 
encounter took place that day between the two armies ; 
the Sultan, as restless as a mother weeping for her lost 
child, darted hither and thither, and rode from battalion 
to battalion, urging on his men to fight for God. I have 
been told that el-Melek el-'Adel charged the enemy in 
person twice that day. The Sultan, with his eyes full of 
tears, went from battalion to battalion, crying : ' On for 
Islam /' The more he gazed towards the city and saw the 
ordeal the inhabitants were passing through, and their 
terrible sufferings, the more often he charged with renewed 
vigour and encouraged his troops to fight. That day 
he took absolutely nothing to eat, and drank nothing 
but a few cupfuls of a (certain) drink which his physician 
advised him to take. I was not present at this battle, 
being confined to my tent at el-'Aiadiya by an attack 
of sickness,, but I watched all that was going on from 
that place. When night fell the Sultan returned to the 
camp, after the last evening prayer. He was worn out 
with fatigue, and a prey to melancholy and vexation. He 
slept, but his sleep was not quiet. At daybreak he 
ordered the drum to beat. At this summons the troops 
came in from all sides and formed into squadrons, ready 
to return to the work of the previous day. That same day 
we received a letter from the city containing the following 
statement : ' We are so utterly reduced and exhausted 
that we have no ckoice but to surrender the city. If 
to-morrow, the 8th, you do not effect anything for our 
rescue, we shall offer to capitulate, and make no condition 
but that we receive our lives.' This was the most distressing 
news the Moslems could receive. The blow struck them to 
the heart, for all the forces of the coast, of Jerusalem, 

17 — 2 


Damascus, Aleppo, and Egypt, and the other Moslem 
countries, had been collected together at Acre. Moreover 
the city was held by the most renowned emirs in the army, 
the bravest champions of Islam, such as Seif ed-Din 'Ali 
el-Meshtub and Beha ed-Din Karakush, who had com- 
manded the citadel from the very commencement of the 
siege. The Sultan, struck by a blow the' like of which he 
had never before experienced, suffered so terribly that 
fears were entertained for his health. Nevertheless, he 
prayed to God without ceasing, and besought His aid, 
showing the most wonderful calmness and resignation, 
coupled with a determination to carry on the Holy War, 
and God does not waste the hire of those who do well 
(Kuran ix. I2i). 

Thinking that it would be best to storm the enemy's 
camp and force his way in, he summoned all his troops 
to arms ; his warriors sprang to the saddle ; the cavalry 
came together as well as the infantry; but this day our 
plan did not succeed. In truth the enemy's foot presented 
a front like a solid wall ; behind the shelter of their ram- 
parts they defended themselves with their arms, their 
arbalists and arrows. Some (of our men) forced their 
way across the trenches, but their opponents fought 
fiercely, and they could not dislodge them from their posi- 
tions. One of the Moslems, who had leapt the trenches, 
reported that he had seen a man, a Frank of enormous 
stature, who, all alone on the top of the parapet, was 
holding the Moslems at bay by his own unaided strength ; 
his comrades stood on either side and handed him stones, 
which he hurled at our men as they advanced to the scarp. 
' This man,' said he, ' had been struck by more than fifty 
arrows and stones, but nothing distracted him from his 
work. He kept on fighting and driving back the men 
who were coming on, until at last he was burnt alive by 


a bottle of naphtha, hurled at him by one of our pyro- 
technists.' One very intelligent old man, belonging to the 
mercenaries, was amongst those who forced their way into 
the enemy's trenches that day. * Behind their rampart,' 
he told me, * was a woman, wrapped in a green me/Mta 
(a kind of mantle), who kept on shooting arrows from a 
wooden bow, with which she wounded several of our men. 
She was at last overpowered by numbers ; we killed her, 
and brought the bow she had been using to the Sultan, 
who was greatly astonished/ The battle raged throughout 
the day and was only terminated by the fall of night. 



The desperate assault to which the enemy had subjected 
the city, and the enormous multitude of troops that attacked 
it on every side with constant relief from their comrades, 
had so undermined the strength of the garrison by the 
loss of horse and foot-soldiers, that the courage of the 
besieged sank to the lowest ebb. They saw immediate 
death before them : they felt that they could not make a 
lengthened resistance now that the enemy had established 
themselves in the ditches, and occupied the outer wall. 
They had undermined it, and filled the hollow with com- 
bustibles, to which they had set fire, and thus destroyed 
the curtain of the outwork.^ The enemy had then forced 
their way through the gap, but with a loss of more than a 
hundred and fifty men in killed and prisoners. Amongst 

^ Acre was defended by double walls on the E, 


the number were six officers, one of whom cried out : * Do 
not kill me, and I will make the Franks withdraw;' but a 
Kurd, who was close by, rushed on him, and slew him. 
The five others met the same fate. The following day the 
Franks cried out (to our people) to save the lives of the six 
officers, promising in return to spare the lives of all the 
garrison; but they replied that it was too late. This 
occasioned the besiegers great grief, and for three days 
they made no further attack on the city. We also heard 
that Seif ed-Din el-Meshtub went in person to see the 
French king, the leader of the besiegers, to offer to capitu- 
late, and that he addressed him as follows : * We have 
taken cities from you, and even when we carried them by 
storm, we have been accustomed to grant terms to the 
vanquished, and we have had them taken to the places in 
which they wished to take refuge, treating them with all 
kindness. We, then, will surrender the city to you if you 
will grant us terms.' To which the king made answer : 
' Those you took were our servants and slaves ; you 
are likewise our slaves. I will see what I shall do.' We 
were informed that el-Meshtub then took a haughty tone, 
and made a long speech, saying, amongst other things : 
* We will rather kill ourselves than surrender the city, and 
not one of us shall die before fifty of your greatest have 
fallen.' Then he withdrew, and returned to the city with 
the news he brought. Some of the besieged were so terrified 
by the king's answer that they seized a vessel, and sailed 
during the night of the 8th to 9th, and came out to join 
the Moslem army. The most important of these men were 
Ibn el-Jawali, 'Izz ed-Din Arsel, and Sonkor el-Washaki. 
The two latter, on their arrival in the camp, feared the 
Sultan's wrath, and hid themselves so effectually that 
they could not be found. However, they succeeded in 
taking Ibn el-Jawali, and he was put into prison {Zered- 


khand)} On the following day the Sultan mounted his horse, 
intending to take the enemy unawares, and commanded his 
men to take spades and other tools to fill up the trenches ; 
but the troops did not support him — they disappointed his 
expectations, and retreated. They cried out to him : * You 
will destroy all Islam, and there is no good in that !' That 
same day three envoys arrived from the king of England, 
and asked the Sultan for some fruit and snow. They 
added that, on the following day, the chief of the Hospitallers 
was coming to discuss the feasibility of a peace. The 
Sultan, instead of being angry, gave them an honourable 
reception, and allowed them to walk about in the market- 
place that had been established close to the camp. They 
departed the same evening, and returned to their quarters. 
The same day the Sultan commanded Sarem ed-Din 
Kaimaz en-Nejmi to charge the enemy's trenches at the 
head of his men. Several emirs of the Kurds, amongst 
whom was el-Jenah, the brother of el-Meshtub, joined 
Kaimaz with the men under their command. As soon as 
they reached the walls before the trenches, Kaimaz planted 
his standard in the earth, and defended it for a great part 
of the day. In the thick of the fight, 'Izz ed-Din Jurdik 
(en-Nuri) came up with his troops ; they all dismounted, 
and took an active part in the engagement. On Friday, 
the loth of the month Jomada II. (July 5), the enemy 
remained quietly in their camp, and the Moslem army was 
drawn up in a circle round them. Our brave fellows spent 
the night on horseback, and fully armed, hoping that their 
comrades in Acre would second them by attacking some 
part of the enemy's camp, and that they might force their 

^ According to el-Makrizi,the man who was committed to the State 
prison oi Zered-khdna, 'the storehouse of breastplates,' did not re- 
main there long ; he was soon either killed or set at liberty. — S. de 
Sacy's Chrcstomathic Arabe, 2nd edition, vol. ii., p. 179. 


way in from both sides, giving one another mutual support. 
This was the plan they had formed, and were determined 
to carry out at whatever cost ; but it was absolutely im- 
possible for the besieged to effect a sortie that night, for 
one of their servants had deserted to the enemy, and 
betrayed the garrison's design. The Franks therefore 
maintained a strict watch over the city, and guarded, with 
unrelaxed attention, against every movement of the garrison. 
On this same Friday, three envoys from the Frank camp 
had an interview with el-Melek el-'Adel, but returned, after 
an hour's talk, without having settled anything. The close 
of day found the whole Moslem army drawn up on the 
plain under arms ; in this manner they passed the night. 
On Saturday, the entire force of the Franks began to 
make ready for battle, and the great commotion going on 
in every part of their camp led us to believe that they meant 
to take the field against us. Whilst the troops were getting 
into line, about forty men were seen coming out of the 
gate from which a flag was flying, and they called out to a 
party of memluks: ' Send out to us el-'Adel ez-Zebedani, 
the Sultan's freedman, and Governor of Sidon !' When 
this man went up to them, they entered into a discussion 
on the subject of the evacuation of Acre by the garrison ; 
but they were so exacting in their demands that the 
Saturday passed without anything being concluded. 



On Sunday, the I2th of the month, letters came, saying: 
' We have sworn to die together ; we will fight until we fall, 
and will not yield the city while there is breath in our 


bodies. You, on your side, must do all you can to occupy 
the enemy and prevent their attacking us. Since we are 
resolved, be sure that you do not humble yourselves before 
the enemy, or show yourselves fainthearted. Our minds are 
made up.' The man who swam out to us with these letters 
told us that the Franks attributed the great noise they had 
heard during the night to the introduction of a strong 
body of troops into Acre, and believed them to be still 
in the city. ' Therefore/ said the man, ' a Frank came 
out below the wall and called to one of the men on the 
top, saying : *' I beseech you, by the truth of your religion, 
to tell me how many men were thrown into the city last 
night," that is to say, on the night preceding the Saturday. 
For there had been a great noise during the night, which 
had roused both the armies without any apparent cause. 
The man who was questioned replied that they were a 
thousand horse-soldiers.' ' Nay,' answered the Frank, ' not 
so many as that, I saw them myself; they were clad in 
green. '^ The arrival of the contingents (from the different 
Moslem districts) that had come in one after another 
enabled us to divert the enemy's attention from their 
attack on the city — which was now on the point of falling 
— for the space of several days. Breaches had been made 
in many places in the walls, but the besieged had built a 
wall behind them, from the top of which they maintained 
a brave struggle. On Tuesday, the 14th of the month, 
Sabek ed-Din, Prince of Sheizer, came into the camp, and 
on Wednesday, the 15th, Bedr ed-Din Dolderim also 
arrived, at the head of a large body of Turkomans, that 
he had hired with money furnished by the Sultan. On 
Thursday, the i6th, Asad ed-Din Shirkuh arrived. The 

^ Beha ed-Din quotes Frank evidence to show that the dead 
Martyrs of Islam (whose colour is green) were fighting for the 
garrison. The mysterious noise appears to have been an earthquake. 


Franks remained immovable; they would neither make 
peace nor accept the capitulation of the garrison, except 
on the condition that all the prisoners in the hands of the 
Moslems should be set at liberty, and that all the cities of 
the districts on the coast should be given up to them. A 
proposal was made to surrender the city and all it con- 
tained, with the exception of the inhabitants, but this they 
rejected. The cross of the crucifixion was then offered to 
them, in addition to the former terms, but they persisted in 
their demands, and showed the greatest arrogance. Thus 
all the subtlety of our diplomacy was thrown away upon 
them ; they used all their skill (in these negotiations) ; but 
God also was skilful, for God is the best of tlie skilful 
(Kuran iii. 47). 



On Friday, the 17th of Jomada II., the man swam out 
from the city with letters. These informed us that the 
garrison were reduced to the last extremity, and were too 
weak to defend the breach, which was now very large ; 
they saw Death himself looming before them, and feared 
that everyone would be put to the sword if the city were 
carried by storm. They had therefore concluded a treaty 
of peace, by which the city with all that it contained — its 
engines of war, stores and ships — was to be surrendered to 
the Franks, who were to receive, in addition, two hundred 
thousand gold pieces (dinars), and five hundred prisoners 
not of rank, together with one hundred of the principal 
captives to be named by the Franks ; the besieged had also 
promised to give up the cross of the crucifixion. As soon 


as these conditions were accepted the Moslems were to 
leave the city in safety, taking their money and personal 
property with them, and their wives and children were to 
be allowed to accompany them. The Franks had, more- 
over, stipulated for the payment of four thousand gold- 
pieces to the marquis, because this treaty had been brought 
about through his mediation. 



When the Sultan had learnt the contents of the letters 
from the city, he expressed the greatest displeasure. The 
news made the profoundest impression upon him, and he 
summoned his councillors together, to inform them of it, 
and consult with them upon the course to be adopted. They 
were divided in opinion, and he did not adopt either of the 
plans they suggested. Full of anxiety, he determined to 
send the man back to the city that night, with a letter 
declaring his formal disapproval of a treaty containing 
such conditions. He was still in this state (of anxiety), 
when, all of a sudden, the Moslems saw the banners of the 
infidels floating from the walls of the city, with crosses and 
the distinctive pennons (of their leaders), whilst fires were 
lighted on the ramparts. This was on Friday, the 17th of 
Jornada H., in the year 587 (July 12, 1191 A.D.), in the 
middle of the day. The Franks with one accord raised a 
mighty shout, whilst the Moslems were overwhelmed by this 
dreadful blow, and the hearts of the believers in one God 
overflowed with grief. The people thought then of the 
word of wisdom, ' We come forth from God, and to Him 
we must return,' and they made the camp ring with their 


vociferations, groans, and lamentations. The grief of each 
heart was according to its belief, and every man was 
afflicted by this evil according to the measure of his faith 
and zeal. And it burst upon them that the treaty between the 
people of the city and the Franks was upheld. The marquis 
entered the city with the king's standards, and planted 
them that very Friday in the place of the banners of Islam ; 
he planted one on the castle, one on the minaret of the 
mosque, a third on the Templars' Tower, and a fourth on the 
Slaughter-Tower.^ The Moslems were all ordered to one 
particular quarter of the city. At that time I happened to 
be on duty in the Sultan's tent, and, seeing him struck 
down with grief like a mother who has lost her child, I 
offered him all the consolations that are usual in such a 
case, begging him to think of the future fate of the (other) 
cities of the coast, and of Jerusalem itself, and to turn his 
attention to delivering the Moslem captives in Acre. This 
was during the night preceding Saturday, the i8th of 
the month. He finally decided to leave the place where 
he was encamped, since there was no longer any reason 
for hemming in the enemy ; he therefore dispatched 
the baggage by night to the position he had previously 
occupied at Shefr'am. He himself remained where he was 
with a small body of horse, to keep a watch on the enemy's 
movements and over the fate of the inhabitants. All that 
night, until morning dawned, our troops were moving off ; 
but the Sultan still nourished the hope that, by the grace 
of God, the Franks, rendered incautious by their success, 
would come out and attack him. Then he would have an 

^ The castle was on the N. wall of Acre, near the centre. The 
mosque was the Church of St. John, near the centre of the city. The 
Templars' fortress was by the sea, on the S.W. of the city. The Tower 
of Slaughter is probably the ' Bloody Tower ' at the N.E. corner of 
the inner wall. 


opportunity for rushing down upon them and avenging 
all the wrong they had done him, leaving it in God's 
hands to decide to whom He should give the victory. 
The Franks, however, made no movement, they were 
occupied in taking possession of Acre, and in establishing 
themselves in the city. He remained in the same place until 
daybreak on the 19th, when he removed to the baggage 
(that is, to Shefr'am). That day three (Franks) came out 
(of the city), accompanied by Akush, the chamberlain, a 
very well-informed man, who came to speak on behalf of 
his colleague Beha ed-Din Karakush. They came for 
instructions regarding the money and prisoners which had 
been stipulated for in the treaty of peace. They were 
honourably received, and stayed the night, and on the 21st 
of the month they departed for Damascus, still on busi- 
ness relating to the prisoners. The Sultan also sent an 
ambassador to the Franks, to obtain information as to 
late occurrences, and also to ascertain what period of time 
would be allowed him to carry out the terms of the treaty, 
which was to be the basis of the truce. 



On the last day of the aforesaid month the Franks came 
out, and, following the sea-shore to the north of the city, 
spread out in a long line, with their horse and foot drawn 
up in order of battle. The Sultan was informed of this 
manoeuvre by the advanced guard, and, ordering the drum 
to be sounded, he mounted his horse, and sent considerable 
reinforcements to the guard in front. He himself remained 
behind, to give the Moslem troops time to mount and 


assemble. The reinforcements had not reached the ad- 
vanced guard before they became engaged in a furious 
encounter with the enemy. As soon as they received the 
reinforcements, they charged straight ahead, forced the 
division of the enemy that was in front of them back, and 
threw the cavalry into confusion ; the cavalry then aban- 
doned the infantry and took to flight. The runaways 
thought that there must be troops in ambush in rear of the 
advanced guard; they therefore rushed headlong back to 
their camp, whilst our guard fell on their foot, killed about 
fifty men, and followed the others in hot pursuit right up 
to their trenches. That same day the envoys of the 
Franks, who had gone to Damascus to inquire into the 
condition of the Christian prisoners there, took away with 
with them four of the chief men. During the evening the 
men arrived who had been commissioned by the Sultan to 
prepare a statement of the Moslem prisoners detained in 
Acre. The two sides kept on sending messengers to one 
another until the ninth day of the following month. 



That same day Hossam ed-Din Hosein Ibn Barik el- 
Mehrani came out (from Acre) with two of the king of 
England's officers. He announced that the king of France 
had taken his departure for Tyre, and that they had come 
to discuss the matter of the prisoners, and to see the cross 
of the crucifixion, if it happened to be in the Moslem 
camp, or to know if it had been sent to Baghdad. It was 
shown to them, and when they saw it they displayed the 
most profound reverence, prostrating themselves on the 


eround till their faces were covered with dust, and humili- 
ating themselves in adoration. They informed us that the 
princes of the Franks had accepted the proposal made by 
the Sultan, which was that he should deliver into their 
hands what was stipulated by the treaty, at three periods^ 
of a month each. After this the Sultan despatched a mes- 
senger to Tyre with magnificent presents, and great store 
of perfumes and beautiful apparel, as an offering to the 
king of the French. On the morning of the loth of Rejeb, 
Ibn Barik and his companions returned to the English 
king, and the Sultan, with his personal friends and the 
troops of his guard (halkd), betook himself to the tell 
close to Shefr'am. The rest of the troops established them- 
selves as best they could in a spot which was only divided 
by the valley from the Sultan's previous camping-ground. 
Messengers went constantly to and fro between the two 
armies^ engaged in trying to lay the foundations of a per- 
manent treaty of peace. This continued until we had 
procured the sum of money and number of prisoners we 
had undertaken to give up to the Franks at the expiration 
of the first period, in accordance with their demands ; viz. : 
that we should give them the cross of the crucifixion, one 
hundred thousand pieces of gold {dinars), and sixteen 
hundred prisoners. Commissioners employed by the 
Franks to examine the instalment we had in readiness 
for them, reported that we had fulfilled the conditions 
imposed except with regard to the prisoners whom they 
had specially named, and who had not all been brought 
together. They therefore let the negotiations drag on till 
the first period had expired. On that day, which was the 
1 8th of Rejeb, they sent to demand what was due to them, 
and the Sultan returned the following answer : ' You must 

' Our author here uses the word tcrm^ toriun in the plural, evidently 
the French word terme^ which was employed in the treaty of peace. 


choose either one of two things : either send our comrades 
back to us and accept the instalment due for this period, 
and we will give you hostages for the performance of the 
conditions imposed for the periods still to come ; or receive 
the instalment we are sending you to-day, and send us 
hostages to be retained until our comrades who are now 
your prisoners are returned to us.* The envoys replied : 
' We will do neither ; send us the instalment that is now 
due, and accept our solemn oath that your comrades shall 
be sent back.' The Sultan rejected this proposal, for he 
knew that if he were to give them the money, the cross, 
and the prisoners whilst our men were still detained by 
the Franks, there would be no guarantee whatever against 
an act of treachery on the part of the enemy, which would 
strike a great blow at Islam. 



When the king of England saw that the Sultan was 
making some delay in the fulfilment of the above-mentioned 
conditions, he acted treacherously with regard to the 
Moslem prisoners. He had promised to spare their lives 
if they surrendered the city, adding that if the Sultan sent 
him what had been agreed upon, he would give them their 
liberty, with permission to take their wives and children 
with them and to carry away all their moveable property ; 
if the Sultan did not fulfil the conditions, they were to 
become slaves. The king broke the solemn promises he had 
made them, openly showed the intentions he had hitherto 
concealed, and carried out what he had purposed to do as 


soon as he had received the money and the Frank 
prisoners. That is what the people of his nation said 
afterwards.^ About four o'clock in the afternoon of 
Tuesday, the 27th of Rejeb, he rode out with the whole of 
the Frank army — infantry, cavalry, and Turcopoles (that 
is, light-armed soldiers) — and advanced as far as the 
wells at the foot of Tell el-'A'yadiya, to which place he 
had already sent forward his tents. As soon as the Franks 
reached the middle of the plain between this /^// and that 
of Kisan, which was occupied by the Sultan's advanced 
guard, they brought out the Moslem prisoners, whom 
God had pre-ordained to martyrdom that day, to the 
number of more than three thousand, all tied together with 
ropes. The Franks rushed upon them all at once and 
slaughtered them in cold blood with sword and lance. 
The advanced guard had previously informed the Sultan 
that the enemy had got to horse, and he sent them some 
reinforcements, but they did not arrive until the massacre 
had been accomplished. As soon as the Moslems saw 
what they were doing to the prisoners, they rushed down 
on the Franks, and a certain number were killed and 
wounded on both sides in the action that took place, 
and lasted until night separated the combatants. The 
following morning our people went out to see what had 
happened, and found all the Moslems who had been 
martyred for their faith stretched on the ground ; they 
were able to recognise some of them. This was a terrible 
grief to them. The enemy had only spared the prisooers of 
note and such as were strong enough to labour. Various 
motives have been assigned for this massacre. According 
to some, the prisoners were killed to avenge the deaths of 

^ De Vinsauf says (iv. 4) that the prisoners were killed to avenge 
those slain by Moslems during the siege, and at the expiration of the 
term granted for giving up the cross and the Christian prisoners. 
K 18 


those slain previously by the Moslems ; others say that the 
king of England, having made up his mind to try and 
take Ascalon, did not think it prudent to leave so many 
prisoners behind in Acre. God knows what his reason 
really was. 



On the 29th of Rejeb the Franks all mounted their horses, 
and packed the tents they had struck on the backs of their 
beasts of burden ; then they crossed the river and en- 
camped on the west bank, close to the road leading to 
Ascalon. Whilst this division showed their intention to 
march along the sea-shore, the king of England sent 
the rest of his men back to Acre, where he had repaired 
the breaches and made the fortifications strong again. 
The army that had set out on this fresh expedition in- 
cluded a great number of notable men, and was led by the 
king of England in person. At daybreak on the ist of 
Sh'aban the enemy lit their fires, as was always their 
custom when they were breaking up their camp. The 
Sultan was informed by the advanced guard that the 
Franks were preparing to move, and he at once ordered 
that the baggage should be loaded up while the people 
waited ; and the people did so. Many of the people and 
of the merchants from the markets lost quantities of their 
goods and merchandize on this occasion, for they had not 
enough horses and beasts of burden to carry all they 
possessed. Any one man could carry enough for his 
needs for a month, but each of these merchants had such 
quantities of wares that he would have been obliged 


to make several journeys to move them all. On this 
occasion it was impossible for anyone to remain behind, on 
account of the proximity of the Franks, who, now that they 
were occupying Acre, were very strong. It was quite light 
by the time the enemy's army began their march. They 
marched in several separate divisions, each capable of 
providing for its own defence, and followed the line of the 
sea-shore. The Sultan sent reinforcements to the advanced 
guard, and despatched a large part of his troops against 
the enemy. A desperate encounter took place, and el- 
Melek el-Afdal, the Sultan's son, sent back to tell his 
father that he had cut off one division of the enemy in such 
a way as to prevent its receiving any support from the 
others, and that his men had attacked it so smartly 
that it had been obliged to retire in the direction of 
the camp. ' If we had been in full force,' he added, ' we 
should have taken them all prisoners.' The Sultan forth- 
with sent out a strong detachment of his troops, going 
with them himself as far as the sands. On our way (for I 
was with him) we met el-Melek el-'Adel, the Sultan's 
brother, and learnt from him that the division in question 
had managed to effect a junction with the one ahead of 
it, and that the chief part of the enemy's forces had 
crossed the Haifa river,^ and then halted to allow the 
rear divisions to come up. He added that it was 
useless to follow them up, and that we should only tire 
the men and lose our arrows to no purpose. When the 
Sultan had convinced himself of the correctness of this 
view, he desisted from the pursuit, and sent a detachment 
back to the baggage-train to help the stragglers to join 
those in front, and to protect them against marauders 
and attacks by the enemy. He himself set out for 

^ The Kishon, N. of Haifa. 



el-Keimun/ where he arrived the same day, as evening 
began to close in. The outer part of his tent only was set 
up for him, a long piece of cloth being hung all round it 
to form a wall. He then sent to summon his principal 
officers, and gave them to eat, after which he consulted 
them as to what should be done. As I was on duty, I 
was present at this meeting. 

Second halt. — At this council it was decided that the 
army should march the following morning. A line of 
troops had already been posted round the Franks to keep 
watch over their movements during the night. Early 
in the morning of the 2nd of Sh'aban the Sultan sent the 
t>aggage forward, remaining where he was until he received 
information of the enemy's movements. As none came 
in, he set out, as soon as it was fully light, to follow the 
baggage, and made a halt for some time at a village called 
es-Sabbaghin,^ in the hope of receiving information regard- 
ing the Franks. Suleiman Ibn Jender was now occupying 
the ground on which the Sultan had halted on the previous 
day, and had left Emir Jordik encamped close to the enemy. 
A number of troops, who came in one after another, 
spent the night there. As the Sultan received no in- 
telligence of any kind, he set out and overtook the 
baggage at a place called 'Ayun el-Asawir.^ On our 
arrival there we noticed several tents, and when he learnt 
that they belonged to el-Melek el-'Adel, he went up to 
them and spent an hour with that prince ; after that he 
repaired to his own tent. There was absolutely no bread 

^ Tell Keiimln (ancient Jok7ieain) called Caymont by the Franks, 
E. of Carmel, 12 miles S.E. of Haifa. 

2 Now Suhbarin, 8 miles S.W. from Tell Keim(in, on Carmel, over- 
looking the plain of Sharon. 

3 Springs at Tell el-Asaivir^ 6 miles S. of Subbarin, on the E. edge 
of the plain of Sharon. 


at all in this halting-place, and provisions rose to such a 
price that one piece of silver was paid for a quarter of a 
measure of barley, and two pieces of silver for a pound of 
biscuit. The Sultan remained there till mid-day. when he 
mounted his horse and rode on to el-Mellaha/ where the 
enemy would be obliged to make their next halt after 
leaving Haifa. He went on in advance to ascertain if the 
ground would lend itself to a pitched battle, and rode all 
over the lands of Csesarea right up to the spot where the 
woods began. He returned to the camp very tired, shortly 
after the hour of evening prayer. I asked him if he had 
received any news of the enemy, and he replied : ' I have 
heard that up to this evening, the 2nd ot Sh'aban, they 
have not left Haifa ; we will wait here till we get news, and 
then determine what it will be best to do.' He spent the 
night on Tell ez-Zelzela,^ and remained there during the 
morning in the hope of receiving intelligence of the 
enemy's movements. 

The herald {Jdwish) then proclaimed that there was to 
be a review, and the troops mounted and formed in order 
of battle. The morning was far advanced before the 
Sultan took any rest, having first breakfasted and received 
some of his emirs. He consulted them as to what he 
should do, and then went to the celebration of mid-day 
prayer ; after that he held a reception in his tent until the 
hour of evening prayer, and made compensation to such 
as had lost their horses and other property ; these sums 
varied from one hundred gold pieces to one hundred and 
fifty, sometimes more, sometimes less. I have never seen 
anyone do things so liberally, and seem so pleased in 

^ Apparently Khurbet Mdlhah, 11 miles S. of Haifa, near the shore, 
2^ miles S. of Dustrey (District), where the first halt was made by 
King Richard's army after leaving Haifa. Salah ed-Din would have 
thus ridden 35 miles on this day. 

2 Tell ez-Zelzela (' Earthquake Hill') was apparently Tell el-Asawir. 


being able to make presents. As evening drew in that 
day they decided to dispatch the baggage forthwith to 
Mejdel Yaba.^ 

Third halt, — The Sultan remained where he was with a 
small body of light cavalry, and did not set out till the 
following morning, the 4th of the month. He mounted 
and rode to the source of the river that flows down to 
Caesarea,^ where he made a halt. Here we had to pay 
four pieces of silver for a rail (pound of twelve ounces) of 
biscuit, and two pieces and a half for a quarter of a 
measure of barley ; bread could not be obtained at any 
price. The Sultan went to his tent and took a light meal^ 
then, after mid-day, having said his prayer, he mounted 
and rode out along the road that the enemy would have 
to follow, to search for a suitable site for a pitched battle. 
He did not return until after the hour of the 'asr (after- 
noon prayer). After that he held an audience for an hour, 
took a little rest, and mounted his horse once more. He 
gave the order for resuming our march, and had his tent 
struck, and when evening fell the tents of the whole army 
had been struck. 

Fourth halt. — The army marched towards a hill that lay 
behind the hill we had just left. Whilst we were there 
they brought two Franks to the Sultan who had been made 
prisoners by the advanced guard. He had them beheaded 
on the spot, and the soldiers cut their bodies to pieces to 
satisfy their thirst for revenge. He spent the night in this 
place and remained there throughout the morning of the 
following day, for he had not yet received any intelligence 
as to the march of the enemy. As the want of provisions 
and forage was very keenly felt by the troops, he sent 

^ Mejdel Ydba is 28 miles S. of Tell el-Asawir, and 12 miles E.N.E. 
of Jaffa. 

2 The Crocodile River {Nahr es-Zerka), N. of Caesarea. 


an order to the baggage to come up that night. Then, 
at his usual time, he rode out in the direction of the 
enemy, and covering Caesarea. He returned to the camp 
about noon. We had just heard that the enemy had 
not yet left el-Mellaha. Two other Frank prisoners were 
brought before the Sultan, who had been captured on the 
flanks of the enemy's army. They were put to death in 
the most cruel manner, for the Sultan was terribly wroth 
at the massacre of the prisoners from Acre. He then took 
a moment's rest, and gave audience after the midday 
prayer. I was in his presence when they brought in a 
Frank knight, evidently a person of consequence, whose 
dress indicated the high rank that he held among the 
enemy. An interpreter was called that we might question 
him concerning them, and we asked him what was the 
price of provisions with them. He replied that, on the day 
they first left Acre, a man could satisfy his hunger for six 
groats (Kerdtzs), but that prices had gone on rising until 
the same quantity now cost eight groats. He was then 
asked why the army remained such a long time in each 
halting-place, and he replied that it was because they were 
awaiting the arrival of the fleet, which was to bring men 
and supplies. When he was questioned as to the loss they 
had sustained in killed and wounded on the day they set 
out, he replied that it had been great. When asked what 
number of horses had been killed that day, he made 
answer, ' About four hundred.' The Sultan then commanded 
that his head should be cut off, but forbade his body to be 
mutilated. The prisoner asked what the Sultan had said, 
and it was explained to him, whereupon he changed 
colour and said : * But I will give you one of the captives 
in Acre.' The Sultan replied : ' God's mercy, but it must 
be an emir.' ' I cannot get an emir set at liberty,* answered 
the Frank. The interest shown in him by all present, and 


his fine figure, all spoke in his favour. And, indeed, I 
never saw a man so well made, with such elegant hands 
and feet, and such a distinguished bearing. The Sultan 
therefore postponed the execution of his commands, had 
him put in chains, and reproached him with the treachery 
of his fellow-countrymen and the massacre of the prisoners. 
He acknowledged that it was an abominable act, but said 
that it was the king alone who had decreed and com- 
manded it to be done. After the 'asr^ the Sultan rode out 
according to his custom, and on his return ordered that the 
prisoner should be put to death. Two other prisoners 
were then brought in before him, whom he likewise 
ordered to be put to death. He spent the night in this 
place, and at daybreak the next morning heard that the 
Franks were marching on Caesarea, and that their vanguard 
was near the city ; he therefore thought it best to with- 
draw from the enemy's road and take up another 

Fz/tk halt. — He removed with his troops to a place close 
to the tell we had been occupying, and, after having the 
tents pitched, set out to examine the district through which 
the enemy would have to pass, hoping to find a suitable 
site for a pitched battle. He returned towards mid-day, 
and called his brother el-Melek el-'Adel, and 'Alem ed- 
Din Suleiman Ibn Jender, to consult them as to what 
was to be done. He then snatched a few moments' rest, 
and when the call to the zohr (mid-day) prayer was cried, 
he attended its celebration. After this he mounted and 
set out in quest of news of the enemy. Two Franks 
who were brought before him were put to death by his 
orders ; and two others, brought in shortly afterwards, 
suffered the same fate. Towards the close of the day 
he had two others killed, who were brought before him 
later on. On returning from his ride, he was present at 


the celebration of the maghrib^ prayer, and then held an 
audience according to his custom. Afterwards he sum- 
moned his brother el-Melek el-'Adel, and sending every- 
one else away, remained closeted with him in conversation 
until a very late hour. On the following day, the herald 
announced that there would be a review, but of the guard 
{halka) only. The Sultan rode out in the direction of the 
enemy, and halted on (one) of the tells rising above 
Caesarea, which city the enemy had entered on Friday, 
the 6th of Sh'aban. He showed himself there during the 
morning, then halted and gave his officers a repast. He 
then got into the saddle again and visited his brother; 
after the mid-day prayer he rested for a short while and 
then held an audience. At this audience they brought in 
fourteen Frank prisoners, and a woman of the same race, 
who was the daughter of the knight mentioned before. 
She had a Moslem woman with her whom she kept a 
prisoner. The Sultan ordered the Moslem woman to be 
set at liberty, and sent the others to prison. They had 
been brought from Beirut, where they had been taken with 
a number of others in a ship. They were all put to death 
on Saturday, the 7th of Sh'aban. The Sultan maintained 
his position, keeping constant watch for an opportunity of 
attacking the enemy's forces on the march. 

Sixth halt, — On the morning of the 8th the Sultan rode 
out according to his custom, and on his return received 
news from his brother that the enemy were preparing 
to move. The battalions- had maintained their several 
positions round Csesarea during the night. He then ordered 
food, and the people ate. After this a second messenger 
came in to announce that the enemy had commenced their 

* See p. 21. 

2 We use the words ' battalions ' and ' squadrons ' indiscriminately 
to translate afldb in the plural. 


march, whereupon the Sultan ordered his drum to beat, and 
mounted at the head of his cavalry. He then set out, and 
I accompanied him close up to the army of the Franks, 
when he formed his troops in line round the enemy, and 
gave the signal for battle. The marksmen were posted 
in front, and the arrows shot by both sides fell thick as 
rain. The enemy had already formed in order of battle ; 
the infantry, drawn up in front of the cavalry, stood firm 
as a wall, and every foot-soldier wore a vest of thick felt^ 
and a coat of mail so dense and strong that our arrows 
made no impression on them. They shot at us with 
their great arbalists, wounding the Moslem horses and 
their riders. I saw some (of the Frank foot- soldiers) 
with from one to ten arrows sticking in them, and still 
advancing at their ordinary pace without leaving the 
ranks. Their infantry was divided into two divisions, one 
of which was posted in front of the cavalry ; the other 
was not called upon to fight, and took its ease as it 
advanced along the shore. When the division that was 
engaged was fatigued and the men were exhausted by 
their wounds, it was relieved by the other division, and 
went off to rest. The cavalry was in the centre, and did 
not quit its position except when it was ordered to 
charge. It was drawn up in three divisions. In the 
first, which formed the van-guard, rode Geoffrey {sic) 
the ex-king, followed by all the troops of the sea-coast 
countries which had remained faithful to him ; the kings 
of England and France- rode in the centre, and the 
sons of the Lady of Tiberias-^ were in the rear-guard with 
a detachment (of Hospitallers). In the centre of their 
army was a cart, on which w^as fixed a tower as high as 

^ See p. 367. This was called the gambison or pourpoint. 

2 The King of France was not with the army. 

3 The wife of Raymond of Tripoli, who held the castle of Tiberias. 


a minaret, and from this floated the standard of the 
people. This was the disposition of their forces, accord- 
ing to my own observation, and to information given me 
by some of the Frank prisoners and the merchants who 
frequented their camp. Their troops continued to advance 
in the order we have just described, all the while main- 
taining a steady fight. ^ The Moslems discharged arrows 
at them from all sides to annoy them, and force them 
to charge ; but in this they were unsuccessful. These 
men exercised wonderful self-control ; they went on their 
way without any hurry, whilst their ships followed their 
line of march along the coast, and in this manner they 
reached their halting - place.- They never made long 
marches, because they were obliged to spare the foot- 
soldiers, for those of them who were not engaged in 
fighting used to carry the baggage and tents, as they 
had so few beasts of burden. One cannot help admiring 
the patience displayed by these people, who bore the most 
wearing fatigue without having any participation in the 
management of affairs, or deriving any personal advant- 
age. They fixed their camp on the bank of the river 
furthest from Caesarea. 

Seventh halt, — At daybreak, on the 9th, the Sultan was 
informed that the enemy was already in the saddle, and 
ready to march. He therefore mounted his horse, drew 
up his squadrons, and sent his marksmen to the front. 
Whilst he was marching to the attack, the marksmen 
surrounded they enem on all sides, and kept up a constant 
discharge of arrows, but without making any impression 
on them. The three divisions in which the army was 
drawn up, as we have described above, commenced their 

^ Literally, while the market of war was well thronged. 
2 This camp was on the Nahr el-Mefjir, 3 miles S. of Cassarea, 
called the ' Dead River' by De Vinsauf. 


march, and if one of them proved unable to resist us, the 
nearest division came up to its support. They assisted one 
another mutually, whilst the Moslems surrounded them on 
three sides, and attacked them with the greatest energy. 
The Sultan busied himself in bringing his battalions 
forward, and I saw him ride between the marksmen of 
the two armies, with the enemy's arrows flying over 
his head, attended only by two youths who were each 
leading a horse. He hurried from one squadron to another, 
encouraging them to advance, and commanding them to 
press on and come to close quarters with the enemy. With 
the roll of the drums and the bray of the trumpets were 
mingled cries of the ta/i/il and the takbtr {There is but 
one God I God is great I). But the enemy stood firm 
without moving or turning aside. The Moslems charged 
the Franks several times, but they had a number of men 
and horses wounded by missiles from the arbalists, and 
by the arrows discharged against them by the infantry. 
We kept on surrounding them, attacking them and charging 
them, until they reached a river called Nahr el-Kasab^ 
where they pitched their camp. This was at mid-day, 
and the heat was overpowering. Our troops drew off and 
discontinued the attack, knowing that they could not hope 
to gain any advantage over the enemy when they were 
once encamped. That day Islam lost one of its bravest 
champions, a man named Aiaz, surnamed el-Tawil, * the 
long man,' one of the Sultan's memluks. He had been 
fighting, and had killed several of the bravest of the 
enemy's horsemen, who had left the ranks and engaged 

^ This stream, now called Nahr Jskanderuneh^ is 5 miles S. of the 
Dead River, and is called by De Vinsauf the 'Salt River'; it is 
marshy and reedy. The Franks reached it on September 2, and 
remained there till after the 5th, which agrees with the present account 
of the Nahr el-Kasab or ' reedy river.' 


in single combat in the space between the two armies. 
Aiaz had had several encounters of this sort with them, 
and after awhile the Franks avoided him. But he kept 
on measuring his strength with them until at last his 
horse fell under him, and he testified (for the faith) on 
the field of battle. The Moslems were terribly grieved 
at his death. He was buried on a U// above el-Birka,^ 
which is a place where the waters of a great many streams 
flow together. The Sultan ordered his baggage to halt 
in el-Birka, and when the hour of the 'asr had passed, 
he had a meal served for his men, and gave them an 
hour's rest. He then set out along the Nahr el-Kasab, 
and halted again somewhat higher up the river, watering 
there whilst the enemy watered lower down at a very little 
distance from the place where we w^ere.^ At this halting- 
place the price of a quart of barley had risen to four 
dirhems (pieces of silver), but we found plenty of bread 
at half a dirhem a pound. The Sultan remained there, 
waiting until the Franks should resume their march, and 
he could attack them again ; but as they spent the night 
in their camp, we also remained where we were. 



A DIVISION of the Moslem army which had been detached 
to watch the enemy's movements fell in with a body of 

^ El-Birka is the 'pool' or swamp in the lower part of the Nahr 
el-Kasab. On the sand-hills immediately S.W. is the ruined monu- 
ment called Mejdhed Sheikhah, ' the place where chiefs fought in the 
Holy War.' This is possibly the site of the tomb of Aiaz. 

2 Salah ed-Din's camp was some 10 miles E. of that of Richard 
near the head of the Nahr el-Kasab. 


our adversaries that had also come out to reconnoitre. 
As soon as our men could get near the Franks they 
rushed on them and attacked them furiously. The enemy 
lost a considerable number in the encounter, but as they 
were reinforced by another body of Franks, who had seen 
what was going on and had run up to their support, they 
held their ground and kept on fighting. The Moslems lost 
two men^ and took three prisoners, whom .they brought to 
the Sultan. When questioned by him, these men stated that 
the king of England had been informed by two Bedawin, 
who had visited him at Acre, that the Moslem army 
was very small, and that it was their information which 
had induced him to take the field. They added : ' Yester- 
day evening — they referred to the evening of Monday — 
when he saw the Moslems fight so obstinately, and observed 
the number of their squadrons (taking also into consideration 
that he had nearly a thousand wounded, and that several 
of our men had been killed), he was obliged to remain 
to-day encamped in the same place to rest his troops. 
Then, when he thought of the battle which had just been 
fought, and the host of Moslems he had to fight, he sent 
for the Bedawin and had them beheaded.' During all that 
day, which was Tuesday, the lOth of Sh'aban (September 3, 
1 191) we maintained our position, because the enemy had 
not left theirs. 

Eighth halt, — Towards noon that same day the Sultan 
made up his mind to march out in front of the enemy. 
Our men moved off to the roll of the drum, and made 
their way into the wood of Arsuf, with orders to halt at a 
tell in its midst, close to a village called Deir er-R^iheb."^ 

^ Our author takes pleasure in minimising the losses of the Moslems. 

2 Deir er-Rdhcb^ ' Monk's monastery,' is probably the present Deir 
Asfin^ 3. ruin in the woodland region S. of the Nahr Iskanderuneh, 
7 miles E. of the camp at Nahr el-Falik. 


Xight surprised them, and the troops lost their way among 
the thickets, so the Sultan was obliged to remain there till 
Wednesday morning, the nth of the month, to reassemble 
them. He then rode out to look for an advantageous site 
for a battle. He remained all that day in the position he 
had taken up, and was informed that the enemy had 
remained on the banks of the Nahr el-Kasab, to await the 
reinforcements that were to be sent them from Acre, in 
eight great ships. The Moslem outposts picketed round 
the Frank army kept us well supplied with intelligence, 
and had an encounter with the enemy's foragers in which 
several were killed on both sides. 



The enemy informed our advanced guard that they wished 
to communicate with us, and begged that some one might 
be sent to confer with them. Therefore 'Alem ed-Din 
Suleiman Ibn Jender, who was in charge of the guard that 
day, sent a man out to know what they had to say. He 
learnt that they wished to confer with el-Melek el-'Adel. 
With the Sultan's permission, that prince went out to the 
advanced guard and passed the night with them, having an 
interview with the envoys. Their proposal, in brief, was as 
follows : ' The war between us has been maintained for a 
long time, and a number of brave warriors have fallen on 
both sides. We ourselves only came out to help the 
Franks of the coast districts ; make peace with them, and 
let the two armies return each to its own country.' During 


the morning of Thursday, the i2th of the month,^ the 
Sultan sent a letter to his brother, saying : ' Try to protract 
the negotiations with the Franks and keep them where 
they are until we receive the Turkoman reinforcements we 
are expecting.' Indeed, at that moment they were very 
close at hand. 



When the king of England learnt that el-Melek el-'Adel 
had come to the outposts, he sent to him to ask for an 
interview. El-'Adel consented, and the two princes met, 
each attended by a magnificent cortege. The son of 
Honferi,^ a man of high rank in the countries on the coast, 
acted as their interpreter. I had an opportunity of seeing 
this young man on the day when peace was concluded ; he 
was, in truth, a fine young fellow, but his beard was shaved 
after the manner of his nation. The King of England 
opened the conversation by expressing his desire for the 
conclusion of peace, and el-'Adel replied : ' If you wish to 
obtain peace and desire me to act as your agent with the 
Sultan, you must tell me the conditions you have in view.' 
' The basis of the treaty,' said the king, ' must be this : 
You must return all our territory to us and withdraw into 
your own country.' El-'Adel replied with scorn, and a dis- 
cussion ensued, which resulted in their each withdrawing 
to his own camp. When the Sultan saw that the enemy 
was on the move, he dispatched his baggage, but remained 

» The Franks were still halting at the Salt River on September 5. 
2 Humphrey of Toron, one of the chief barons of the kingdom of 


where he was himself to draw up his troops in order 
of battle. The small baggage had already started, and 
was on the point of overtaking the heavy, when the Sultan 
sent an order for its return ; but as night had now closed 
in, the people were in great confusion all that night. 
The Sultan then sent for his brother to know what had 
passed between him and the king, and had a private con- 
versation with him. This was on the night preceding 
Friday, the 13th of the month. The enemy resumed their 
march and encamped in another place called el-Birka} from 
which they could see the sea. During the morning of 
Friday the Sultan went out to get news of the Franks. 
On his ride they brought him two men who had been 
taken prisoners by the advanced guard, and he ordered 
their heads to be struck off. When he had ascertained that 
the enemy would not leave their camp that day, he dis- 
mounted, and had a talk with his brother on the unwilling- 
ness of the Franks to move, and discussed the measures 
that should be taken. He spent the night in the same 



On Saturday, the 14th of Sh'aban (September 7, 1191), 
the Sultan was informed that the enemy were marching on 
Arsuf. He mounted forthwith, and drew up his troops in 
order of battle, being resolved to come to close quarters 

^ Birket Ramadan^ here intended, is a swampy lake, drained by a 
cutting in the rocks, on the course of the Nahr el-Fdlik, or ' River of 
the cleft,' called Rochetaillie by De Vinsauf It is 9 miles S. of the 
Salt River, and was reached by the Franks on September 6 — a 
Friday. Arsuf was a fortress on the shore five miles further S. 



with the enemy that day. The marksmen drawn from 
each battalion went out in advance, and rained a shower of 
arrows on the enemy, who were approaching the thickets and 
gardens of Arsuf The Moslem troops harassed them on 
every side, some advancing, led by the Sultan in person, 
others remaining in position to cover them in case of 
retreat. They charged the enemy furiously ; the fire of 
war burst from the marksmen, and killed and wounded. 
The enemy were obliged to hurry forward to try and reach 
the place where they were to halt and encamp, and they 
then found that they were in a most galling position, and 
that we had them at our mercy. The Sultan rode from the 
right wing to the left, urging, his men to fight for the Faith. 
I several times saw him, attended by only two pages, who 
were each leading a horse ; I met his brother also with no 
greater a following, and they could both see the enemy's 
arrows falling to right and left of them. The enemy's 
progress was forced to become slower and slower, and the 
Moslems were flattering themselves that it would prove an 
easy victory, when the first ranks of the enemy's foot 
reached the wood and the gardens of Arsuf. Then the 
enemy's cavalry formed in one body, and, knowing that 
nothing but a supreme effort could save them, they resolved 
to charge. I myself saw their knights gathered together 
in the midst of a protecting circle of infantry ; they put 
their lances in rest, uttered a mighty war-cry, and the ranks 
of infantry parted to allow them to pass ; then they rushed 
out, and charged in all directions. ^ One division hurled 

1 The charge was begun by the Hospitallers in rear, and gradually 
involved all the cavalry. According to De Vinsauf (IV., 9-25), 
Richard had 100,000 men in five divisions. The Templars led the 
van ; the Angevins and Bretons came next ; then King Guy's forces 
and those of Poitou ; then the Normans and English round the 
standard on its truck ; and lastly the Hospitallers. A flanking party 
on the left (east) was led by Henry of Champagne. 


itself on our right wing, another on our left, and a 
third on our centre, throwing our whole force into con- 
fusion. I was in the centre, and when that body fled in 
the wildest disorder, it occurred to me that I might take 
refuge in the left wing, which was the nearest to me. But 
when I came up with it, I found that it, too, was 
struck with panic, and had taken to its heels even quicker 
than the other. Then I turned to the right wing ; but 
when I reached it, I found it in still greater confusion 
than the left. I then turned to the position occupied, 
according to custom, by the Sultan's squadron, which was 
always a rallying-point for the others. I there found only 
seventeen men ; but the standards were still flying, and the 
drum continued to beat. When the Sultan saw the dire 
discomfiture of the Moslems, he returned to his squadron, 
and found but very few men. He stopped here, and, 
perceiving that the whole neighbourhood was filled with 
fugitives, he ordered the drums to beat without ceasing, 
and had all whom he saw escaping brought to him. But, 
in truth, he could not stop the people in their flight ; 
when the enemy charged, they gave way, and when he 
drew rein for fear of an ambush, they also came to a stand, 
and did battle with him. During the second charge, they 
fought even while they fled, and halted as soon as their 
pursuers stopped ; and in the third, in which the enemy 
reached the top of the hillocks and rising ground that 
happened to be in his way, they fled once more, but, 
seeing him draw up, they also came to a stand. All those 
who saw that the Sultan's squadron was still at its post, 
and who heard the drum beating, were ashamed to go on, 
and, dreading the consequences if they continued their 
flight, they came up, and joined that body of troops. A 
number of soldiers had now rallied in the centre, and the 
enemy, who had reached the top of the hillocks {te//s), 

19 — 2 


halted, and turned to face their ranks. The Sultan, for 
his part, occupied the centre of his squadron, and displayed 
such energy in rallying the fugitives that he finally suc- 
ceeded in collecting the whole of his army together again. 
The enemy, fearing that some ambush was concealed 
in the woods, retired towards their halting-place, and 
the Sultan regained some rising ground close to the edge 
of the wood, and there drew up his troops ; having no tent 
to take shelter in, he stood in the shadow of a piece of 
cloth. I stood beside him, endeavouring to console him ; 
but he would not listen to me — he was so overwhelmed by 
the events of the day : however, he took a little food that 
we offered him. He remained in this position, awaiting 
the return of the horses that had been taken to water at 
some considerable distance, and while we were thus drawn 
up, he had the wounded brought to him to comfort them, 
and to see that their wounds were dressed. He gave his 
own horses to those who had lost theirs. There were a 
great number of killed and wounded this day on both sides. 
Amongst the leaders who stood firm, the chief were el-Melek 
el-'Adel, Kaimaz en-Nejmi the eunuch, and el-Melek el- 
Afdal, the Sultan's son. El-Afdal charged so furiously 
that a tumour he had in the face burst, and his face was 
drenched with blood ; but he suffered it with remarkable 
patience. The squadron from Mosul displayed the greatest 
bravery, and won the Sultan's thanks for its leader, Ala 
ed-Din. Our people sought for their comrades, and found 
many a one who had died a martyr on the battle-field. 
The bodies of persons of note were found, especially that 
of Musek, the grand emir (of the Kurds), a chief renowned 
for his bravery ; that of Kaimaz el-'Adeli, who was also 
celebrated ; and that of Lightish, a brave officer, whose 
death was a cause of great grief to the Sultan. We had a 
large number of men and horses wounded, and the enemy 


on their side had a great many casualties. We took only 
one prisoner, who was brought to the Sultan, and beheaded 
by his command. We also captured four horses from them. 
The Sultan then ordered the baggage forward (to the river) 
el-'Auja/ and I obtained his permission to follow it, and 
to precede him to the place he had appointed for our en- 
campment. I left him seated, waiting until all his troops 
were collected, and till intelligence came in regarding the 
enemy, who were encamped close to Arsuf. 

Ninth halt. — I set out after the mid-day prayer, and 
when I reached the crossing, saw the baggage-train drawn 
up on the further bank of the 'Auja in a beautiful spot 
covered with grass. The Sultan reached the camp towards 
the close of the same day, and whilst the soldiers were 
crowding together at the head of the bridge,- he took up 
a position on a hill commanding the river; then, instead 
of coming to the camp, he sent his herald to proclaim that 
the troops were to cross the river again and come to the 
place where he was standing. God alone knows the depth 
of grief which filled his heart after this battle ; our men 
were all wounded, some in their bodies, some in their spirits. 
On (Sunday) the 15th of Sh'abati, the Sultan ordered 
the drum to be beaten, and mounted his horse ; then, 
followed by the whole army, he retraced his steps of the 
previous day, and advanced towards the enemy. When 
he drew near Arsuf, he drew up his squadrons in order 
of battle, hoping to draw the Franks from their position, 
and to get an opportunity of attacking them. But they 
made no movement that day, being worn out with fatigue 

^ The 'A-iija flows into the sea N. of Jaffa ; the camp (near Mejdel 
Yaba) was 10 miles S.E. from the battlefield. 

2 This bridge {Jisr el-Abdbjteh) was S. of the camping ground, 
which was near Mejdel Yaba. The Moslems appear to have been 
flying beyond the camp. 


and suffering severely from their wounds.^ He stood facing 
them until evening came on, when he withdrew to the camp- 
ing-place of the previous night. The next morning, the 
1 6th day of the month, he again ordered the drum to 
be beaten, and rode out at the head of his troops in 
the direction of the enemy. On his way he heard that 
they were on the march to Jaffa ; he then advanced close 
to them, drew up his troops in order of battle, and sent 
his marksmen forward. The Moslem army completely 
surrounded the enemy, and discharged such a shower of 
arrows that one could hardly see the sky, for they were 
attacking them with all the fury of hatred. The Sultan 
hoped by this means to provoke them to charge, that his 
men might have an opportunity of attacking them, leaving 
it in God's hands to give the victory to whom He would. 
But the Franks would not charge ; they restrained them- 
selves, keeping always behind the infantry, and continued 
to advance in their usual order of march. Proceeding in 
this manner, they came to the 'Auja, on the upper banks 
of which river we were encamped, while they took up a 
position further down the stream. Some of their troops 
crossed to the west bank,2the others remaining on the east. 
When our men saw that they were preparing to encamp, 
they withdrew, and the Sultan returned to the baggage, and 
when he reached his tent took food. They then brought 
him four Franks and a woman, who had been taken prisoner 
by the Arabs, and he ordered them to be kept in strict 
confinement. He spent the remainder of the day writing 
to the provinces, commanding them to dispatch the con- 
tingents still to come. They brought him information 

' Sunday, September 8, 1191, was the feast of the Nativity of the 
Virgin. The Franks, according to De Vinsauf, were giving thanks 
for their victory in the Church of Arsiif. 

2 The ^Aaja runs nearly N. and S. in the central part of its course. 


(that same day) that the enemy had lost great numbers 
of their horses in the action at Arsuf, for the Arabs who 
had gone over the battle-field had counted more than 
a hundred chargers. He then dispatched the loads to 
Ramla, and I preceded them on their march to that place. 
He himself spent the night in the place where we had 
been encamped. 

TeM^/i halt, — On the 17th of the month, as soon as he 
had said the morning prayer, he set out for Ramla^ with 
the light baggage. Two Franks were brought to him, 
whom he ordered to be beheaded. A messenger sent back 
by the advanced guard brought him news that the Franks 
were marching from Jaffa ; he then advanced as far as 
Ramla, where two more Franks were brought before him. 
When these prisoners were questioned as to the enemy's 
movements, they stated that their countrymen would pro- 
bably remain in Jaffa for some days, for they intended 
to put the city into a good state of defence, and furnish 
it with. plentiful supplies of men and provisions. He there- 
fore called the members of his council together, and asked 
their opinion whether it would be better to destroy the 
city of Ascalon, or to leave it as it was. They decided 
unanimously that a division of the army under el-Melek 
el-'Adel should remain behind, to keep a strict watch over 
the enemy's movements, and make constant reports thereon 
to the Sultan, whilst the Sultan himself should set out 
for Ascalon, and destroy it before it fell into the hands 
of the Franks. For the enemy, as soon as they had 
massacred the garrison, would probably make that city 
the basis of their operations in an attack on Jerusalem, 
and thus cut off all communication with Egypt. The 
Sultan wished to prevent this, and, knowing that it would 

^ Ramleh is 12 miles from Mejdel Yaba, where the camp of Saiah 
ed-Din was fixed. 


be impossible for the Moslems to hold the city, with the 
remembrance of Acre and the fate of its garrison fresh 
in their minds, and being convinced, moreover, that his 
soldiers would be afraid to shut themselves up in the city, 
he declared that he intended to embody all the forces at 
his disposal in the army under his command, and then 
concentrate his attention on the defence of Jerusalem. It 
was therefore decreed that Ascalon should be destroyed. 
So, as soon as night began to fall, he dispatched all the 
heavy baggage and commanded his son, el-Melek el-Afdal, 
to set forth at midnight and follow it. He himself started 
on the Wednesday morning, and I went with him. 

Eleventh halt. — About mid-day on Wednesday, the i8th 
of Sh'aban, the Sultan reached Yebna/ where he gave his 
people time to rest, and then marched into the territory 
of the city of Ascalon. His tent had already been pitched 
at some distance from the city, and he spent the night 
there, though he slept very little, for the thought of being 
obliged to destroy the city filled his mind. I had left 
him after midnight, but at daybreak he summoned me 
to him again, and began to discuss his plans with me. 
He then sent for his son, el-Melek el-Afdal, to consult 
him on the subject, and they talked together for a long 
while. He said to me, whilst I was on duty in his tent: 
' I take God to witness I would rather lose all my 
children than cast down a single stone from the walls, but 
God wills it ; it is necessary for the Moslem cause, there- 
fore I am obliged to carry it through.' He sought counsel 
with God, and God made him see that it was necessary 
to destroy the city since the Moslems were unable to 
protect it. He therefore sent for 'Alem ed-Din Kaisar, 
the governor, one of his chief memluks, and a man of good 

^ K?^«^^ (ancient y«3;w«/a), called Ibelin by the Franks, was 9 miles 
S.W. of Ramleh, and 12 miles S. of Jaffa, near the shore. 


judgment, who commanded that all the workmen in the 
town should be gathered together. I myself saw (that 
officer) walking up and down the market-place, and going 
from tent to tent to hire workmen. He assigned a certain 
portion of the ramparts to each group of labourers ; the 
task of destroying a curtain and tower was also given to 
each emir and company of soldiers. When these people 
entered the city there arose a great sound of mourning and 
lamentation, for it was pleasant to look upon and delightful 
to the senses ; its walls were strong, its buildings beautiful, 
and it occupied a most charming situation. The inhabitants 
were overwhelmed by the news that their city was to be 
destroyed, and that they would have to give up their 
homes ; they uttered loud lamentations, and began at 
once to sell everything they could not carry away with 
them, giving for one piece of silver what was really worth 
ten, and even selling ten hens for one dirhem. Great 
distress reigned in the city; the inhabitants repaired to 
the camp with their wives and children to sell their house- 
hold goods. Some of them set out for Egypt, some for 
Syria ; numbers were obliged to depart on foot, having no 
money with which to hire beasts to carry them. This was 
a horrible time during which terrible things occurred. 
The Sultan, assisted by his son el-Melek el-Afdal, 
spent his time in getting workmen together and en- 
couraging them to work well, for he was very apprehensive 
that if the Franks heard what he was doing, they would 
come up and prevent him from carrying out his intention. 
The troops, worn out by fatigue, both of mind and body, 
spent that night in their tents. The same night a mes- 
senger came from el-Melek el-'Adel, informing the Sultan 
that that prince had had an interview on the subject of 
peace with ambassadors from the Franks, and that he 
had also conversed on the same subject with the son of 


Honferi, who had come to visit him, and asked him to 
surrender to the Franks all the cities of the districts on 
the coast. The Sultan — whose troops were worn out and 
weary of such constant fighting and warfare, besides being 
broken down by neediness — felt inclined to accept this 
proposal, and wrote to el-'Adel to enter into negotiations 
on the subject, granting him full powers to make such 
terms as should seem best to him. On the 20th of Sh'aban 
the Sultan busied himself from early morning in urging 
forward the work of demolition, and putting more work- 
men on the walls. As an encouragement to them he gave 
them all the corn that had been stored there, and which he 
saw it would be impossible to carry away ; moreover, time 
pressed, and he feared an attack from the Franks. By his 
orders they set fire to all the houses and other buildings 
in the city, and the inhabitants were obliged to sacrifice 
whatever property they had still remaining, as they had 
no means of taking it away. We constantly received in- 
telligence of the enemy's movements; they were now very 
hard at work repairing (the fortifications of) Jaffa. We 
were informed by a letter from el-Melek el-'Adel that the 
enemy did not know we were engaged in demolishing the 
city (of Ascalon). ' We are delaying matters as much as 
we can with these people,' the prince added, ' and we will 
prolong the negotiations to give you time to destroy the 
city.' By the Sultan's orders all the towers were filled 
with wood, and then set on fire. On the morning of the 
2 1st he left the camp on horseback to urge the labourers 
on in their work ; he kept them well occupied in their task 
of destruction, and visited them periodically to see that 
they were at work; he was therefore very soon so ill 
that for two days he was unable either to ride or take 
any food. Every moment news of the enemy came in 
with tidings of encounters with them — sometimes sue- 


cessful, sometimes disastrous — for there were continual 
engagements in the short space between them and our 
advanced guard. (Meanwhile) he kept pressing forward 
the demolition of the city, and brought the camp 
closer to the walls, which enabled the servants, the 
camel and ass-drivers, and all the other camp-followers to 
take part in the work. Therefore the walls were soon 
partially demolished, although they were most solidly 
built, being from nine to ten cubits thick — the thickness 
varying with the position. One of the stonemasons in- 
formed the Sultan in my hearing that (the wall of) one of 
the towers which he was then undermining was as thick as 
a lance is long. Demolition and fire laid the city low 
during the whole of the month of Sh'aban. Towards the 
end of the month a letter came from Jurdik, saying that the 
enemy had begun to make expeditions from Jaffa, and to 
overrun the neighbouring districts. This news inspired the 
Sultan with the hope of being able to punish the invaders. 
He resolved to advance upon them and take them by 
surprise, leaving the miners at Ascalon with a body of 
cavalry to protect them ; but he afterwards thought it 
best to postpone his departure until after they had burnt 
down the ' Hospitallers' Tower,^ a building that com- 
mandod the sea, and was as strong as a castle. I had 
been in the tower, and gone all over it ; it was so solidly 
built that the v/orkmen's picks made no impression on it 
whatever, and they were obliged to set it on fire to make 
the stones more friable before the labourers attacked it 
with their tools. On the ist of Ramadan the Sultan gave 
this task into the hands of his son el-Melek el-Afdal and 
his officers. I watched them carrying up the wood to set 
the tower on fire. It burnt for two days and nights. The 
Sultan did not ride out that day, in order to spare himself, 
and I, too, was seized with an indisposition that prevented 


my attending him throughout the day. In spite of the 
important matters he had on his mind, he sent three times 
during the day to inquire how I was. 



The Sultan started at midnight on the 2nd of Ramadan, 
in order to avoid the heat of the day, and spare himself as 
much as possible. He reached Yebna towards mid-day, 
and dismounted, to rest in his brother (el-'Adel's) tent, and 
also to obtain information regarding the enemy from him. 
He remained there an hour, and then rode off to his own 
tent, where he spent the night. On the following day, the 
3rd, he set out very early for Ramla, arriving at that place 
about noon. There he took up his position with the heavy 
baggage in a way that showed he intended to remain for 
some time. He then drew up his troops in order of battle, 
by right wing, left wing, and centre ; after which he gave 
the people a meal, and then rested for a short while. 
Between the afternoon and the four o'clock prayer he 
visited Lydda,^ and, observing that the church in that 
place was a very fine building, he ordered that it should 
be destroyed, as well as the castle of Ramla. That same 
day several troops of workmen began the work of demo- 
lition. All the straw and corn stored in the Government 
granaries here was given up to the people. The in- 
habitants were obliged to emigrate to other centres of 
population, and very few people remained in the place. 
The labourers worked until the evening, when the 

^ Salah ed-Din destroyed all the castles on the plain, or near the 
foot of the hills, according to De Vinsauf. 


Sultan returned to his tent. The following day, the 
4th of Ramadan, he set the people to work again in 
both places, and left them under the direction of super- 
intendents, who were instructed to make them push on 
with the task in hand. He visited the works every even- 
ing, and had a meal served after the maghreb prayer ; then, 
when everyone had broken their fast,^ they returned each 
one to his own tent. The idea of visiting Jerusalem 
then occurred to the Sultan, and he set out secretly with 
a small following to ascertain the condition of the city, 
charging his brother el-Melek el-'Adel to take his place at 
the head of the army, and to press forward with the work 
of destruction. He started at night-fall for Beit-Nuba,^ 
where he halted until the following day. As soon as 
morning-prayer had been said, he set out for the Holy 
City (el-Kuds) which he reached on the 5th of the month. 
The remainder of the day he spent in examining the con- 
dition of the city — its fortifications and garrison, the state 
of its supplies, the efficiency of its war-stores, etc. That 
same day the servants of Kaimaz the eunuch brought him 
two Christians they had stopped, with letters from the 
governor {Wdli) to the Sultan. These letters, written 
but a few days before, stated the needs of the city as 
to corn, military stores, and garrison. The Sultan read 
them, and ordered all concerned to be beheaded. He 
carried on his examination of the city until the 8th of the 
month, on which day he took his departure at noon, 
leaving orders that the fortifications should be repaired ; 
he spent the night at Beit-Nuba, and started in the morn- 
ing to return to the army. That same day M'oin ed-Din 
Kaisar Shah, Lord of Malatia, son of Kilij Arslan, came 
to beg the Sultan's support against his father and brothers, 

^ Being Ramadan, the fast was only broken at sunset. 
2 See p. II. 


who were trying to take the city from him, El-Melek 
el-'Adel went out from Lydda to welcome him, and gave 
him the most honourable reception. They pitched our 
visitor's tent close to Lydda. That same day the enemy's 
foragers scattered over the plain, and were attacked by our 
advanced guard. As soon as the enemy were informed of 
this, they sent a detachment of cavalry to their support, 
which was likewise attacked by the guard. One of the 
prisoners stated that the king of England had ridden out 
with this detachment, and that a Moslem was about to 
pierce him with his lance, when a Frank threw himself in 
between, and received the blow, which caused his death ; 
he himself (the king) was wounded.^ That, at least, is 
what we were told, but God alone knows the truth. On 
the 9th of Ramadan the Sultan rejoined the army, and 
was received by all with great demonstrations of joy. 
When Kilij Arslan's son came before him, he dismounted 
to receive him, treated him with every mark of honour, 
and welcomed him in his own tent. He pressed forward 
the work of demolition he had ordered with unrelaxed 
energy. Meanwhile, intelligence of the enemy came in 
very frequently. There had been several engagements 
between the Franks and the advanced guard, and the 
Arabs had stolen numbers of their horses and mules. 



In the meantime an ambassador was sent by the marquis 
to state that he would make peace with the Moslems on 

^ King Richard was hawking when he 'fell into this ambush.— De 
Vinsauf, v. 31. 


condition that they gave up to him the cities of Sidon and 
Beirut. Under those circumstances he undertook to make 
an open rupture with the Franks, to lay siege to Acre, and 
take it from them, provided that the Sultan would ratify 
the proposed conditions beforehand. The Sultan sent 
el-'Adl en-Nejeb (the courier), who bore a reply accepting 
the marquis's proposals. He was very anxious to make 
the marquis break with the Franks, for he was a man 
greatly to be feared, and accursed. The marquis, on his 
side, saw that the Franks intended to deprive him of the 
city of Tyre ; he had therefore shut himself up in that 
place, which was strongly fortified. El-'Adel set forth on 
the 1 2th of Ramadan, accompanied by an ambassador from 
the Sultan ; the offer made by the marquis was to be 
accepted on condition that he should first openly declare 
war against the Franks by making an attack on Acre, and 
that, as soon as that city was taken, he should release the 
(Moslem) prisoners detained there, as well as those in 
captivity in Tyre ; then, and not till then, would the Sultan 
give him the two cities he had asked for. During the 
evening of the same day the ambassador, sent by the king 
of England to confer with el-Melek el-'Adel concerning 
the treaty of peace, was brought before that prince. On 
the 13th of Ramadan the Sultan thought it necessary to 
withdraw to the neighbouring hills with his troops, so as to 
send the baggage-animals out to collect forage : for Ramla, 
where we were quartered, was too close to the Franks for 
us to risk sending them out, lest they should be carried off. 
He therefore left that place and took up a position on a 
hill adjoining that of en-Natrun,^ taking with him the 
heavy baggage and the whole of the troops, excepting, of 
course, the advanced guard. This manoeuvre was carried 
out after the demolition of Ramla and Lydda. As soon as 

^ See p. 32. 


he had taken up his position, he went all round en-Natrun 
— a castle celebrated for its strength and massiveness — 
and forthwith gave an order for its demolition, on which 
they set to work at once. Messages were frequently sent 
between el-Melek el-'Adel and the king of England. The 
king's ambassadors declared that their master had the 
greatest confidence in el-Melek el-'Adel, and trusted him 
implicitly in the matter of arranging the terms of peace. 
After this ten persons chosen by the Franks brought him 
such satisfactory messages, that he at once communicated 
them in writing to the Sultan. This occurred on the 
17th of the month. Among the news they brought was 
intelligence of the death of the king of France, which had 
taken place at Antioch in consequence of an illness with 
which he had been seized. They also informed us that 
the king of England had returned to Acre, having obtained 
certain intelligence that the marquis had entered into 
correspondence with the Sultan, broken all his promises to 
the king, and undertaken to advance upon Acre. The 
king, therefore, had hastened back to that city, to break 
off these negotiations, and get back the marquis's allegi- 
ance to the cause. After this the Sultan rode out to 
the advanced guard, and, meeting his brother at Lydda, 
questioned him on the news he had received. In the 
evening, about the hour of the 'asr prayer, he returned to 
the camp, and two Franks were brought before him who 
had fallen into the hands of the advanced guard. These 
men confirmed the news of the death of the king of 
France, and the departure of the king of England for 

* The king of France, who was ill, had left Palestine on August i. 
Richard's visit to Acre was with the intention of coming to terms 
with the French, who supported the claims of Conrad of Montferrat 
as king of Jerusalem. Philip died in 1223 A.D. 




As it seemed necessary to make an inspection of the Holy 
City and the state of its fortifications, el-Melek el-'Adel 
was commanded to repair to that place. This was on the 
29th of the month ; he had just left the advanced guard, 
having heard that the leaders of the Franks had withdrawn 
from our neighbourhood, and he started on his journey 
immediately. That same day a letter was received from 
el-Melek el-Mozaffer Taki ed-Din, announcing the death 
of Kizil, son of Aildekez, and king of Persia ; his own 
people had attacked and assassinated him. It was said 
that the murder had been committed at the instigation of 
his wife, who had joined the faction of Sultan Toghril. 
This occurrence, which took place during the first third of 
the month of Sh'aban that year, gave rise to great dis- 
turbances in the different provinces of Persia. El-'Adel 
returned from Jerusalem on the 21st of Ramadan. The 
same day a letter arrived from the August and Prophetic 
Court (that is to say, from the Khalif's Chancery) refer- 
ring to el-Melek el-Mozaffer's expedition against Khelat, 
and expressing the greatest interest in Bektimor. They 
interceded also on behalf of Hasan Ibn-Kafjak, kept 
prisoner at Arbela by Mozaffer ed-Din, son of Zein ed-Din, 
and begged the Sultan to give orders that he should be set 
at liberty. They likewise requested that el-Kadi el-Fadel 
might be sent to the Khalif's Court to settle various ques- 
tions and make divers arrangements. This letter was sent 
to el-Kadi el-Fadel for his information, with instructions 
that he should write to Taki ed-Din. 





On the 22nd of the month of Ramadan some of our 
thieves brought the Sultan a mare and mule that they 
had carried off from the enemy's camp, into which they 
had made their way. The Sultan had hired three hundred 
Arab brigands, who used to get into the enemy's camp 
and steal their money and horses ; they also carried off 
living men. They proceeded as follows : one of them 
would enter the tent of some Frank whilst he was asleep, 
and awake him by planting his dagger at his throat. 
When the sleeping man saw the robber armed with the 
dagger, he did not dare to say a word, and would suffer 
them to carry him out of bounds of the camp. A few of 
them who had called out had had their throats cut on the 
spot ; others, finding themselves in the same circumstances, 
had not said a word, preferring captivity to death. This 
state of things continued until peace was concluded. The 
same day a messenger came in from the advanced guard 
with the news that a body of troops had left Acre and 
marched out on the plain; the guard had attacked them and 
taken twenty of them prisoners ; these prisoners had con- 
firmed the report of the king of England's return to Acre, 
and stated that he was ill; the garrison of Acre, they added, 
was very weak, provisions were getting scarce, and there 
was no money. That same day a large fleet, said to have 
come from Acre, and bringing the king of England,^ 

' King Richard brought French and other forces to Jaffa, which 
meantime was being rebuilt. 


anchored alongside the enemy's camp, and disembarked a 
great number of troops, who, according to one report, were 
to garrison Ascalon ; according to another, were to be led 
against Jerusalem. On the 24th of the month the pri- 
soners we noticed above arrived from ez-Zib,^ and their 
presence in the camp was a source of great joy to the 
Moslems. The same day an ambassador arrived who had 
been despatched by Kizil shortly before his death ; whilst 
another came on behalf of his nephew, Ainaj. During the 
evening a messenger came from the king of England 
bringing a horse as a present from that prince to el-Melek 
el-'Adel, in return for the gifts he had received at his 
hands. We also received tidings that day of the death of 
Hossam ed-Din (Muhammad Ibn 'Omar Ibn) Lajin, son of 
one of the Sultan's sisters ; he had died at Damascus in 
consequence of an illness that had attacked him very sud- 
denly. The Sultan was much grieved at this loss. That 
same day he received a dispatch from Sama (the com- 
manding officer), saying that the prince (of Antioch) had 
made an inroad into the districts of Jebela and Laodicea, 
that his troops had been routed and he himself obliged to 
seek shelter in his city after having lost a great number of 
men, and utterly failed in his undertaking. 




On the 26th of Ramadan el-Melek el-'Adel, who was then 
on duty in command of the advanced guard, was invited 
by the king of England to send a messenger to him. 
El-Melek sent him es-Sani'a Ibn en-Nahhal, a fine young 

^ The Biblical Achzib, 8^ miles N. of Acre. 

20 — 2 


fellow, who acted as his secretary. The interview took 
place at Yazur/ whither the prince had gone with a largt 
detachment of the infantry, which was then scattered over 
the plain. They spent a considerable time talking of the 
peace, and the king uttered these words : ' I will keep the 
promise I have given to my friend and brother,' referring 
by these terms to el-Melek el-'Adel : he then sent the 
same messenger back to him with the proposals he had to 
make to us. He also wrote and forwarded by the same 
messenger a letter for the Sultan, couched in the following 
terms: * You are to greet him, and say that both the Mos- 
lems and the Franks are reduced to the last extremity ; 
their cities are destroyed, and the resources of both sides 
in men and stores brought to nought. And since right 
,has been done in this matter, we need speak only of 
Jerusalem, of the cross, and of the land in question. As to 
Jerusalem, we are fully resolved never to give it up, even 
though we had but one man left ; touching the land, you 
must restore it to us as far as the other side of Jordan ; and 
lastly, as regards the cross — to you it is nothing but a piece 
of wood, but it is very precious in our eyes, and if the 
Sultan will graciously give it into our hands, we will make 
peace and breathe again after continual weariness.' When 
the Sultan had read the contents of this letter, he called 
his councillors together to consult them on the answer that 
should be made. Afterwards he wrote thus : ' Jerusalem 
belongs to us just as much as to you, and is more precious 
in our eyes than in yours, for it was the place of our 
Prophet's journey, and the place where the angels gathered. 
Therefore, do not imagine that we shall give the city up to 
you, or that we shall suffer ourselves to be persuaded in 
the matter. As regards the land, it belonged originally to 
us, and you came to attack us ; if you succeeded in getting 

' See p. 32. 


possession of it, it was only because you came unexpectedly 
and on account of the weakness of the Moslems who then 
held it ; as long as the war lasts God will not suffer you to 
raise one single stone upon another in this country. Lastly, 
as concerns the cross, its possession is a great advantage to 
us, and we cannot give it up except we could thereby gain 
some advantage to Islam.' This was the answer that the 
messenger took back to the king of England. 



During the last days of the month of Ramadan, Shirkilh 
Ibn Bakhel, one of the emirs imprisoned in Acre, came 
into the camp. He had been successful in concealing a 
cord under his pillow, and emir Hasan Ibn Barik had 
hidden another in the privy. They had made arrange- 
ments to escape together, and got out of the window of 
the privy and let themselves down from the top of the 
first wall by means of their ropes. Shirkuh climbed over 
the outer wall and succeeded in getting clear without 
accident ; but Ibn Barik, who was following him, had the 
misfortune to fall, the cord giving way under his weight. 
Shirkuh found him, stunned by his fall, and spoke to him, 
but could get no answer; he then shook him, in the 
hope of reviving him and taking him with him, but all his 
efforts were in vain. Then, seeing that if he stayed with 
his comrade they would both be taken, he left him, and, 
in spite of his fetters, ran till he came to the hill of el- 
'Aiadiya. The sun was just beginning to rise, so he hid 
himself there, and remained concealed until the day was 


well advanced. By that time he had managed to break off 
his fetters; so he set out once more and succeeded, under 
the protection of God, in reaching our camp. He pre- 
sented himself before the Sultan, and informed him, 
amongst other things, that emir Seif ed-Din el-Meshtub 
was being kept in very close confinement, and that he had 
undertaken to pay a heavy ransom in horses, mules, and 
precious things of all kinds. He said also that the king 
of England had been to Acre and taken away with him 
all that belonged to him — servants, memliiks and portable 
property, leaving nothing whatever behind. He added 
that the farmers (Fellahin) on the mountains were supply- 
ing him with provisions. He also stated that Toghril, one 
of the Sultan's chief memluks and his sword-bearer, had 
made his escape before him. 



On the 29th of Ramadan el-Melek el-'Adel sent to 
summon me, with 'Alem ed-Din Suleiman Ibn-Jender, 
Sabek ed-Din Lord of Sheizer, 'Izz ed-Din Ibn el- 
Mokaddem, and Hossam ed-Din Bishara. He informed 
us of the proposition made by the king of England to his 
messenger, which was as follows : that el-Melek el-'Adel 
should marry the prince's sister, whom he had brought 
with him from Sicily, on his way to Palestine, after the 
death of her husband, king of that island ; she was to live 
in Jerusalem,^ and her brother would give up to him those 

' The English chroniclers say nothing of this extraordinary pro 
posal. It was not regarded as serious by either side, if indeed it was 
ever proposed. See pp. 325, 326. 


cities of the Sahel (coast) which belonged to him, to wit. 
Acre, Jaffa and Ascalon and their dependencies ; the 
Sultan, on his side, was to grant el-Melek el-'Adel all the 
cities he possessed in the Sahel, and proclaim him king of 
those districts. El-'Adel was to retain all the cities and 
fiefs he then held ; the cross of the crucifixion was to be 
given back to the Franks ; the villages and strongholds 
belonging to the Templars and Hospitallers were to be 
theirs. All the Moslem and Frank prisoners were to 
be set at liberty, and the king of England was to take 
ship and return to his own country. The king suggested 
that matters could be very well settled in this way. When 
el-'Adel knew this, he acted on it, and he summoned us, 
and instructed us to lay the message he had received before 
the Sultan. I was to act as spokesman of the embassy 
and inform the Sultan of the interview with the king. If 
he approved of the arrangement, and thought it would be 
advantageous to the Moslems, I was to take my colleagues 
to witness that the Sultan had given his consent and appro- 
bation ; and if he rejected the proposal, now that the 
negotiations for peace had assumed a definite shape, I was 
in like manner to call upon them to bear witness to his 
refusal. We presented ourselves before the Sultan, and I 
spoke, setting forth all that had taken place at our inter- 
view ; then I read (el-Melek el-'Adel's) letter in the presence 
of my above-named colleagues. He consented to the pro- 
posals on the spot, for he knew very well that the king of 
England would not carry them out, and that it was nothing 
but tricker}'- and mocking on his part. He gave his formal 
consent at my request, saying * Yes ' three several times, and 
calling all who were present to witness his promise. When 
we had obtained his consent, we returned to el-Melek el- 
Adel, and informed him of what had taken place. My 
colleagues stated that I had several times warned the 


Sultan that I should call witnesses to his assent, and that 
he had not hesitated to give his entire approval. The 
proposals, therefore, could be accepted with his full con- 



On the 2nd Shawal (October 24) Ibn en-Nahhal was sent 
to the enemy's camp on the part of the Sultan and el- 
Melek el-'Adel. As soon as the king heard of his arrival 
he sent to tell him that the princess had been greatly 
enraged when she heard of the projected marriage, and 
that she had formally refused her consent, declaring she 
would never give herself to a Moslem. Her brother added : 
' If el-Melek el-'Adel will consent to become a Christian, 
we will celebrate the marriage.' By this means he left a 
door open for further negotiations. When el-'Adel received 
this message, he wrote to his brother informing him of the 
position of affairs. On the 5th of Shawal we heard that 
the Moslem fleet had captured several ships from the 
Christians, one of which was known as being (covered over) 
and carried more than five hundred men. They were all 
killed, with the exception of four important personages. 
This news gave us the greatest pleasure, and was pro- 
claimed to the sound of music. On the 6th of Shawal the 
Sultan called his chief emirs and councillors together to 
consult on the measures to be adopted in case the enemy 
should take the field ; for repeated messages had arrived, 
stating that the Franks had arranged to come out and 
attack the Moslem army. They thought it best to main- 


tain their position and begin by sending away the heavy 
baggage, which would leave them prepared to meet the 
Franks in case of an attack on their part. During the 
evening of the same day two deserters from the Franks 
came in to the camp and informed us that the enemy in- 
tended to come out, to the number of more than ten 
thousand horse ; but they did not know what direction the 
army was to take. According to a Moslem prisoner, who 
had managed to make his escape, they were going to march 
first upon Ramla, and decide upon their further move- 
ments when there. When the Sultan had satisfied himself 
of the truth of this information, he commanded the herald 
to proclaim that the troops were to take their light arms 
and set out with the standards, for he had made up his 
mind to maintain his position in face of the enemy if they 
came out ; then, on the 7th of the month, he advanced, 
and encamped south of Ramla church,^ where he spent the 



In the morning of the 8th of Shawal our troops formed in 
order of battle, and el-Melek el-'Adel, who had been ap- 
pointed to the command of the advanced guard, went 
forward to join that body, with all the volunteers who 
offered to go with him. Amongst them was a body of 
men who had come from Asia Minor iei'-Rmn) with a view 
of taking part in the Holy War. As soon as el-Melek's 
detachment approached the enemy's camp the Sultan's 
memluks, relying on their courage, their excellent horses, 

- The church of St. Mary, Ramleh, now a mosque. 


and their being so used to fighting the Franks, rushed for- 
ward and discharged a flight of arrows at the enemy. The 
volunteers from Asia Minor, led astray by the rashness of 
the memluks, followed their example. The Franks, angry 
and irritated by the close attack, rode from within the 
camp and charged on them like one man, uttering a mighty 
shout. Those only of our men escaped who were borne 
out of danger by their horses, or who were predestined to ^ 
save their lives by the swiftness of their own limbs. The 
enemy took a great number prisoner, and on their side had 
three men killed. The Franks then removed their tents 
to Yazur, and the Sultan that night was at their halting- 
place till dawn. 




On the nth of the month the Sultan set out in the direc- 
tion of the enemy, and, after having examined their position, 
returned to charge me to tell el-Melek el-'Adel that he 
wished to see him, together with 'Alem ed-Din Suleiman 
Ibn Jender, Sabek ed-Din Ibn ed-Daya, and Tzz ed-Din ■ 
Ibn el-Mokaddem. When they came into his presence he 
ordered a servant to send everyone away excepting those 
emirs and myself, and to cause everyone to withdraw from 
the vicinity of his tent. He then drew a letter from his 
cloak, the seal being broken ; when he read it, we saw the 
tears flow down his cheeks. Then he gave way to his griel 
and wept and lamented until we wept also, though w< 
knew not why. When he told us that this letter was to' 
inform him of the death of el-Melek el-Mozafler, we al 
began once more to groan and weep. I then spoke t< 


him, and bade him remember Almighty God, and submit 
to what had been determined and preordained. He 
replied : * I ask pardon of God '; we are His, and to Him 
we return (Kuran ii. 151). 'We must keep this news 
secret, lest the enemy learn it whilst they are close upon 
us.' He then ordered a meal to be served for all who were 
present, and after partaking of it we withdrew. Taki ed- 
Din had died on his return from Khelat to Miafarekin. 
His body was taken to that city, and later on was trans- 
ferred to a mausoleum within a college, now very well 
known, that was founded in his honour, close to Hamah. 
I myself have visited his tomb. His death took place on 
Friday, the 19th of Ramadan, 587 (October 10, 1191). 



On the 12th of Shawal the Sultan received a letter from 

his officers at Damascus, enclosing a despatch from 

Baghdad, sent from the August and Prophetic Court. It 

contained observations on three several matters : first, it 

expressed disapprobation of the conduct of el-Melek 

el-Mozaffer (Taki ed-Din) in marching against Bektimor, 

disavowing his action so strongly that it was formally 

stated the Khalif's Divan would not salute that prince ; 

secondly, it disapproved of the conduct of Mozaffer 

ed-Din, son of Zein ed-Din, in keeping Hasan Ibn Kafjak 

in captivity, and commanded that the prisoner should be 

put in possession of el-Kerkhani.^ This is what had 

^ Beha ed-Din's Kerkhani, or Kerkhini, is probably identical with 
the Kerkhini of the author of the ' M erased el-Ittila,' and of Ibn el- 
Athir (' Kamel,' vol. xii. of Tornberg's edition). It lies E. of the Tigris, 
and is apparently Kirkuk^ the chief town of the Shehrizor Sanjak, and 
an important Turkish military station. 


happened with regard to Ibn Kafjak : he had marched 
against the city of Urumiah^ with Sultan Toghril, who had 
visited him with the view of obtaining assistance after his 
flight from Persia. He had first assisted the Sultan, and 
given him his sister in marriage, and then, in the hope of 
being made that prince's atabeg (guardian), and governor M 
of the country as such, he had marched upon Urumiah,and 
was reported to have put all its male population to the 
sword, and carried off its women and children into 
slavery. He used to make his headquarters in the strong- 
hold of el-Kerkhani, and from thence he issued forth to 
way-lay caravans and ravage the country round. Sultan 
Toghril, seeing that Ibn Kafjak was growing formidable, 
left him, and returned to his own country, whilst his former 
protector continued his depredations. Mozaffer ed-Din, 
Lord of Arbela, succeeded in gaining the man's confidence, 
enticed him into his city, treated him as a confidential 
friend, and then made him prisoner. When Ibn Kafjak 
found that Mozaffer ed-Din had seized his dominions, he 
wrote to inform the Khalif's Divan, hoping to earn the 
Khalifs goodwill and favour by imploring his intervention. 
In the third place, the despatch commanded that el-Kadi 
el-Fadel should be sent to Baghdad as an ambassador to 
settle the preliminaries of certain agreements, and to be 
informed by the Divan on certain points. The Sultan 
sent an answer in the following terms : 'In the first place, 
we gave no instructions in the matter of which you com- 
plain. The prince crossed the river with a view of raising 
troops for the Holy War, and returning forthwith ; but as 
circumstances obliged him to remain some time, we sent, 
commanding him to return; in the second place, you had 
been informed as to Ibn Kafjak's character and his depre- 
dations, and instructions had been sent to Mozaffer 

' Urumiah^ W. of Lake Urumiah in Kurdistan. 


ed-Din to take him with him into Syria, where he was to 
assign him a fief, in order that his whole energies might be 
absorbed in the Holy War; in the third place, el-Kadi 
el-Fadel cannot possibly go to you ; he is almost always an 
invahd, and is not strong enough to undertake the journey 
to Irak: This was the purport of his answer. 



On the 13th of Shawal we were informed that the Lord of 
Sidon^ had arrived as an ambassador from the marquis, 
Lord of Tyre. We had already had frequent discussions 
with him, which resulted in his declaring that they wished 
to break with the Franks, and join us against them. The 
cause of this defection was a quarrel that had arisen 
between the marquis and the other princes of the Franks, 
concerning a marriage which he had contracted with the 
wife of King Geoffrey's- brother. This marriage was 

^ This was Renaud, Lord of Sidon, who, after having escaped from 
the defeat at Tiberias, and then played upon Salah ed-Din's creduHty 
in the matter of surrendering the castle of Shakif (see above, pp. 150- 
153), had been made prisoner by the Sultan, and sent to Damascus. 
Having subsequently recovered his freedom, he joined the faction of 
Conrad, Marquis of Montferrat. 

2 Isabel, second wife of Conrad of Montferrat, and daughter of 
King Amaury of Jerusalem, by Maria, grandniece of the Emperor 
Manuel Comnenos, of Constantinople, was related to the first wife of 
Conrad — also a Greek princess. The marriage was thus within pro- 
hibited degrees ; and, in addition, Humphrey of Toron, stepson of 
Renaud of Chatillon, and first husband of Isabel, was still alive, and 
the question of the divorce was controverted. These were the causes 
of scandal. But Beha ed-Din is wrong, not only as to the king's 
name (Geoffrey for Guy), but as to the relationship. Isabel was half- 
sister of King Guy's wife, not wife of his brother. 


declared a scandal on religious grounds, and was the cause 
of great dissensions. The marquis, apprehensive for his 
personal safety, took advantage of night to escape to Sidon, 
taking his wife with him. He then addressed himself to 
the Sultan, and endeavoured to obtain the support of that 
prince. The marquis's rupture with the Franks was a good 
thing for the Moslems, for the enemy lost in him their 
most energetic leader, their most experienced warrior, and 
their cleverest counsellor. When the Sultan was informed 
of the arrival of his ambassador, he commanded that he 
should have a most magnificent reception. A tent was 
pitched for him within a canvas enclosure, furnished with 
cushions and carpets fit for kings and great men. By the 
Sultan's orders, he was invited to dismount where the 
baggage was drawn up, so that he might rest a little before 
the interview. 



On the i6th of Shawal the Sultan ordered his bodyguard 
to conceal themselves in the hollows of the valleys round, 
and to take command of a number of Arabs. As soon as 
they had taken up their position, the Arabs, according to 
their custom, began to keep watch on the enemy, who used 
to come out to forage and get wood near their encamp- 
ment, so as to seize the best opportunity of attacking 
them. When the foraging-party of the enemy came up, 
the Arabs began to shoot furiously at it. They defended 
themselves, and the enemy, hearing their cries of alarnji, 
sent out a detachment of cavalry to charge the Arabs 
who gave way, and retreated in the direction of the am- 


buscade. The enemy followed them, thinking that they 
could soon overtake them, when all of a sudden the 
Moslem foot and horse rushed from their hiding-place, 
with a mighty shout. It was now the turn of the Franks 
to retreat, and they fled back towards their camp. Their 
countrymen, as soon as they heard the Moslems had 
charged, sent a large body of troops to the scene of the 
action. The fight began anew ; the fight became serious, 
and both sides suffered heavy losses. The enemy had a 
number of men wounded ; we also took several prisoners 
and a quantity of horses. Thanks to the measures taken 
by the Sultan, this action terminated (fortunately for us) : 
he foresaw what would happen, and had commanded Akhar 
' Aslem, Seif ed-Din Yazkoj, and several other officers on 
whom he could rely, to take up a position in rear of, 
and supporting the Moslems. * If you see the troops in 
ambush are getting the worst of it/ he said, ' show your- 
selves.' When the emirs saw the superior strength of the 
enemy's forces, they ordered their foot and horse forward. 
As soon as the Franks saw the Moslem battalions bearing 
down on them, they turned back, and made for. their camp, 
our men rushing after them in hot pursuit. The fight was 
over a little before mid-day. I attended the Sultan that 
morning when he rode out to get news of the battle, and 
we met the first of the soldiers who were returning from it. 
They proved to be the whole of the Arabs, who had left 
the field before the action was finished, bringing with them 
five horses they had taken. Meanwhile, the scouts and 
messengers had kept us constantly informed of what 
was going on : the enemy had upwards of sixty men 
killed ; a certain number of the Moslems had been 
wounded, and Aiaz el-Mehrani, a warrior renowned for his 
valour, had fallen on the field, covered with wounds ; a 
young man in el-Gheidi's service, named Jawali, had met 


with the same fate ; they had taken prisoner two impor- 
tant knights of the Franks, and two deserters came over 
from them, bringing their horses and arms. The Sultan 
returned to his tent, and gave the horses to those who had 
lost their own, and ordered that the greatest care should 
be taken of the wounded. Towards the end of the day, 
el-Melek el-'Adel received a message from the king of 
England, complaining of the ambush, and begging for an 
interview with him. 



On the 1 8th of Shawal, el-Melek el-'Adel joined the ad- 
vanced guard, where a large tent was erected to receive 
him. He had brought with him all sorts of dainties and 
delicacies, various kinds of drinks, and beautiful gifts and 
presents fit for one prince to offer to another. When he 
made presents of this kind, no one could outdo him in 
magnificence. When the king of England came to visit 
him in his tent, he met with the most honourable reception 
at his hands ; then the king took him to his quarters, and 
had a repast served, consisting of such dishes peculiar to 
his country as he thought would be most agreeable to his 
palate. El-'Adel partook of them, and the king and his 
suite ate of the dishes provided by el-'Adel. Their inter- 
view lasted during the greater part of the day, and they 
parted from one another with mutual assurances of perfect 
goodwill and sincere affection. 




That same day the king of England asked el-Melek el- 
'Adel to procure an interview for him with the Sultan. 
When a message was brought to Salah ed-Din upon the 
subject, he consulted his advisers as to the answer that 
he should make. None of the various opinions expressed 
coincided with that held by the Sultan, who couched his 
reply in the following terms : ' It would be a disgrace for 
kings to strive with one another after they had met. 
Let the question at issue between them be arranged first. 
Only after matters have been settled would it be fitting for 
them to have an interview, and talk over serious business. 
Besides, I do not understand your tongue any more than 
you understand mine ; therefore we should require an inter- 
preter whom we could both trust to act as our go-between. 
As soon as some definite arrangement has been concluded, 
we will have an interview and lay the foundation for a 
sincere friendship between the two nations.' The king of 
England much admired this reply, and saw that he could 
only accomplish the object he had in view by conforming 
to the wishes of the Sultan. 



On the 19th of Shavval the Sultan held a reception, and 
ordered the Lord of Sidon to be brought before him that 
he might converse with him, and be informed of the 



object of his mission. I was present when the ambassador 
and his suite were introduced. The Sultan accorded 
him a most honourable reception, addressed a few 
words to his followers, and then ordered a magnificent 
banquet to be served for them. After this he remained 
alone with them. They asked the Sultan to conclude a 
treaty with the marquis, Lord of Tyre ; several influential 
leaders among the Franks had lately joined his faction, 
such as the Lord of Sidon, and other well-known chiefs. 
We have already given an account of his affairs. The 
Sultan replied that he was very willing to conclude peace 
with him, but only on condition that he should openly and 
actively oppose the Franks from beyond the seas. He 
would be induced to take this step by the fears he enter- 
tained, and by their attitude towards him in the matter of 
his marriage. The Sultan promised to accept this treaty, 
but only on conditions calculated to sow disunion among 
the Franks, and ensure that the efforts of one faction 
would neutralize those of the other. 



In the evening of that same day, the son of Honferi, one 
of the greatest among princes and princes' sons of the 
Franks, came to the Sultan's camp with a message from 
the king of England. In his suite was a man said to be a 
hundred and twenty years old. The king's message ran as 
follows : * I like your sincerity, and desire your friendship 
You said that you would give your brother all the districts 
on the sea-coast, and I am anxious that you should judge 
between him and me in the division of the land. But we 


must absolutely have part of the city of Jerusalem (el- 
Kuds esh-Sherif). It is my wish that you should divide 
(the land) in such a way that your brother shall be acquitted 
of all blame by the Moslems, and that I shall incur no 
reproach from the Franks.' The Sultan answered this 
message at once with promises of compliance, and im- 
mediately dismissed the ambassador, whose message had 
made a profound impression upon him. Directly they had 
departed, he sent after the deputation to speak to them 
on the subject of the prisoners, a business to be settled 
separately. They replied that, if peace were made, it would 
embrace all ; if not, there could be no question of the 
prisoners. The Sultan's object was to prevent the con- 
clusion of the peace. At the close of the audience, when 
the envoys had withdrawn, the Sultan turned to me, and 
said : * If we make peace with those people, there is 
nothing to protect us against their treachery. If I were 
to die, it might be difficult to get an army together such as 
this, and (meanwhile) the enemy would have waxed strong. 
The best thing to do is to persevere in the Holy War until 
we have either driven them all from the coast, or we our- 
selves die in the attempt.' That was his own opinion, but 
he was over-persuaded to conclude peace. 




On the nth of Shawal,i the Sultan had summoned his 

emirs and councillors of state to lay before them the 

marquis's proposals, which he was much inclined to accept. 

^ The narrative reverts from 19th to nth ShawM (November 4). 

21 — 2 


It was a question of allowing him to take possession of 
Sidon, on condition that he would openly break with the 
Franks, and join us in actively opposing them. The Sultan 
then set forth the proposals made by the king of England 
as the basis of a treaty. He asked for a certain number 
of towns in the coast-districts, which he specified by name, 
while he gave up the hill-country to the Moslems, or else 
that the towns should be held half and half by either side ; 
in either case, the Christians were to be allowed to have 
priests in the monasteries and churches of the Holy City. 
The king gave us the choice of these two proposals, and 
the council was to consider which should be adopted. He 
then submitted to the emirs the conditions of the treaty of 
peace desired by the king, and the terms of the treaty the 
marquis was desirous of concluding, inviting them to give 
their opinions on the subject, and to consider which were 
to be preferred — the king's proposals or those of the mar- 
quis. He also charged them to determine which of the 
two proposals suggested by the king should be chosen. 
The council declared that, if peace were to be made, an 
arrangement should be concluded with the king : for an 
honest alliance between Moslems and the Franks (of Syria) 
could hardly be counted on, and they must expect to be 
betrayed by them. The meeting then broke up, and the 
subject of the peace was continually discussed. Messengers 
kept on passing to and fro until the preliminaries of the 
treaty were finally arranged. The principal condition was 
that the king should offer his sister in marriage to el-Melek 
el-'Adel, on condition that the pair should be put in pos- 
session of all the cities of the coast-districts held by either 
Moslems or Christians ; the latter were to be given to the 
princess in the name of her brother the king, the former to 
be granted to el-'Adel in the Sultan's name. In his last 
message (to el-'Adel), the king expressed himself as follows 


on this point: 'All the Christians cry out against me 
for thinking of marrying my sister to a Moslem without 
having obtained permission from the pope, who is the head 
of our religion. I am therefore sending an ambassador to 
him, and I shall have an answer in six months. If he gives 
his consent, the arrangement will be carried out ; if not, I 
will give you my brother's daughter to wife, for which we 
should not require the pope's permission.' In the mean- 
time hostilities were kept up, for a state of war seemed to 
hav^e become a necessity. The Lord of Sidon rode out 
sometimes with el-'Adel, and they would go up a hill to 
survey the disposition of the forces of the Franks. When- 
ever the enemy saw them together, they made fresh efforts 
to get the peace signed, for they were in the greatest dread 
lest the marquis should conclude a peace with the Moslems, 
and thus rend asunder the chief bond of strength of the 
Franks. Things remained in this condition until the 15th 
of Shawal. 



On the following Friday the Sultan rose with the intention 
of removing the camp. He called his councillors together, 
and asked them what reply should be made to the proposals 
of the enemy ; he submitted to the meeting the various 
propositions that had been made, and informed them fully 
as to the motives which governed the Franks in their 
offers. He then introduced the envoys from the Franks 
who had come from abroad, the son of Honferi acting as 
their interpreter. He arranged with them that two com- 
missioners should accompany them on their return — one to 
represent himself, the other to represent el-Melek el-'Adel, 
who was the person most interested in this business. The 


message from the Franks stated, among other things, that 
if the pope approved of the matrimonial aUiance, the 
arrangement would be carried out ; ' if not, we will give 
the daughter of the king's brother to el-Melek el-'Adel in 
marriage. She is a virgin, and although, according to our 
religion, the pope's consent is necessary for the marriage 
of a king's daughter who is a widow, such is not the case 
with an unmarried princess ; the family may dispose of 
the maiden's hand as they please.'^ To this answer was 
made as follows : ' If the marriage is permissible, Ifet the 
arrangement we have made be carried out, for we will not 
break our engagements ; if, however, it is impossible, you 
need not select another woman for us.' This statement 
brought the meeting to an end. The envoys then repaired 
to el-Melek el-'Adel's tents to await the ambassador the 
Sultan was to send to the king, who was engaged in pre- 
paring for his mission. Some time afterwards a messenger 
came from the advanced guard, bringing news that a large 
body of foot had left the city, and scattered over the plain 
without any apparent hostile intentions. The Sultan had 
gone to Tell Jezer,^ and everyone packed up and followed 
him. The hour of noon had hardly passed before the 
army was established in its new camp. As soon as the 
Franks heard that the Sultan had changed his position, 
they beat a retreat. After making a halt on this hill, the 
Sultan set out in the direction of Jerusalem, and the Franks 
began to march back to their own territory.^ Wintry 
weather now set in, and rain fell in torrents ; the Sultan 

* A second marriage would require an indulgence. King Richard 
had no grown-up nieces in 1192. 

2 Gezer. See p. 76. 

3 The retreat from Beit Nuba began early in January, 1 192. Richard 
was then busy rebuilding Ascalon, which he reached January 20, and 
he then went to Acre. Beha ed-Din does not describe the rebuildinj; 
of Ascalon. 


therefore set out for the Holy City, and dismissed his 
troops. We spent the winter in Jerusalem. The enemy 
retired into their own territory, the king of England 
returning to Acre, where he remained some time, having 
left a garrison in Jaffa. He sent us a message at this time, 
saying : ' I am anxious to have an interview with el-Melek 
el-^Adel to discuss a matter that would be equally advan- 
tageous for both sides, for I hear that the Sultan has en- 
trusted the business of negotiating peace to my brother, 
el-Melek el-'Adel.' But it was thought that el-'Adel ought 
to go and collect the troops we were then keeping in 
the Ghor, Kaukab, and other places in that part of the 
country, and that therefore he should send to the king, 
saying : ' We have had a great many interviews without 
any good result to either side. It is useless for us to meet 
if the conference you now propose is to be like its pre- 
decessors, and unless you show me that there is a likelihood 
of a speedy settlement of the question.' It was also arranged 
that el-'Adel should conclude peace if he found it possible 
to do so, and if not, that he should prolong the negotia- 
tions so as to allow our provincial contingents time to join 
the army. El-Melek el-'Adel then desired that a document 
should be drawn up and delivered to him, stating the 
utmost limits of the concessions he would be empowered 
to make in order to come to a final settlement. The 
provisions of this document required that the different 
cities and districts should be divided equally, and held 
half-and-half by either side; that if the king insisted on 
the possession of Beirut, a condition should be made that 
the citadel was to be demolished, and not rebuilt, and the 
same for el-Keimun (or el-Kaiun) if they wished to build 
on the rocks ( W'ara) ; that the cross of the crucifixion 
should be restored to them ; that they should have their 
own priests in the Komama (Church of the Resurrection) ; 


and that they should be allowed to make pilgrimages 
thither, but unarmed. We were induced to make such 
concessions by the state of our troops, worn out by the 
fatigues of continual war, harassed by want of money, and 
pining at their long absence from their homes, although 
there were some among them who followed the Sultan 
without thinking of asking for leave of absence. 



El-'Adel set out from Jerusalem in the afternoon of Friday, 
the 4th of Rabi'a I., 588 (March 20, 1192). On his way he 
wrote to us from Kisan, saying that (the son of) Honferi 
and Abu Bekr, the chamberlain, had come to meet him 
with a message from the king of England. The king sent 
to say : ' We consent to the division of the country. Each 
side shall keep what they now hold, and if one side has 
more than the half that is their just share, they shall give 
the other side a proper concession. The Holy City to 
belong to us, but the Sakhra shall be reserved for you.' 
Such were the contents of the letter. The Sultan laid it 
before his emirs, and one of them, Abu el-Heija, declared 
that it was a very satisfactory proposal. This opinion 
seemed to the others to coincide exactly with el-Melek 
el-'Adel's, and they thought the arrangement would be a 
good one. An answer in this sense was dispatched to 
el-'Adel. On the i ith of Rabi'a L, Abu Bekr, the chamber- 
lain, one of el-Melek el-'Adel's suite, came to inform us 
that the king of England had left Acre for Jaffa,i and that 

^ King Richard went to Acre to see the Marquis of Montferrat. 
who met him at Casale Imbert. The king returned to Ascalon en 
Tuesday before Easter. The advice of the Templars and Hospitallers 
was that Ascalon should be rebuilt before Jerusalem was attacked. 


el-Melek el-'Adel saw no necessity for any further inter- 
views with the king unless there were any fresh condition 
to be discussed. The chamberlain added that he himself 
had had several interviews with the king, with the result 
that that prince had relinquished some of his demands, 
and consented that the Sakhra should be given up to us, 
that the citadel should remain in our hands, and that the 
rest should be equally divided (between the Franks and 
the Moslems) ; that any Frank specially mentioned should 
not reside there, and, finally, that the villages in the districts 
belonging to the Holy City, as well as the whole of the 
city itself, should be equally divided. On the i6th of the 
month Rabi'a I., el-Melek el-'Adel arrived on his return 
from the Ghor, and was received by the Sultan, to whom 
he gave all the information we have set forth above. 
Towards the close of the same day, a messenger came in 
to say that the Franks had attacked the camp of some 
Arabs near ed-Darun,^ and had carried off several men, as 
well as about a thousand of their sheep. The Sultan was 
much annoyed at this news, and sent a detachment of 
troops against the marauders, but they did not succeed in 
coming up with them. 



YusUF, the Lord of Sidon's page, had come, on behalf of 
the marquis, to negotiate a treaty of peace, and the Sultan 
had given his consent, but only on the following con- 

^ Ddnhi, or Darum (see p. 117), was the only fortress in the plains 
not destroyed by Salah ed-Din. It was taken by King Richard after four 
days, according to De Vinsauf 


ditions : After the ratification of the treaty, the marquis 
was to break with his countrymen and make open war 
upon them ; he was to be allowed to retain all the land he 
might capture from the Franks by his own unaided efforts, 
while all we ourselves might take was, in like manner, to 
belong to us ; the people of any city we might take by a 
combination of our forces were to be given to the marquis, 
while we were to have the Moslem prisoners and the 
treasure that happened to be in the captured cities ; the 
marquis was to set at liberty all the Moslem prisoners in 
his dominions ; if the king of England were to grant him 
the government of the country, by any arrangement that 
might be made between them, peace was to be maintained 
on the terms of the treaty concluded between us and the 
king of England, the city of Ascalon and the districts be- 
yond not being included ; the plains were to belong to the 
marquis, and what we then occupied to be ours, and that 
which lay between to be halved.^ The envoy took his 
departure as soon as he had received a statement of these 
conditions. On Monday, the 28th of Rabi'a I., Asad 
ed-Din, son of Muhammad, and grandson of the (great) 
Shirkuh, came into the camp with an escort of light 
cavalry, having pushed on in advance of the contingent he 
was bringing. 



It was on Thursday, the ist of Jornada II., that this emir 
arrived in the Holy City. The Sultan, who happened to 
be with his brother, el-Melek el-'Adel, and caught sight of 
el-Meshtub quite unexpectedly, was greatly delighted to 

^ The country in the low hills was the debateable land. 


see him, and rose up to embrace him. He then had the 
room cleared, and entered into conversation with him, 
talking of what the enemy was doing, and of their opinion 
of the peace, in the course of which he learnt that the king 
of England said nothing on the subject. That same day 
the Sultan sent a dispatch to his son, el-Melek el-Afdal, 
bidding him cross the Euphrates and take possession of 
the provinces occupied by el-Melek el-Mansur, son of el- 
Melek el-Mozaffer (Taki ed-Din). That prince, fearing 
the Sultan on his own account, had declared himself in 
open rebellion ; but he trusted in el-Melek el-'Adel, and 
besought him to intercede on his behalf. This made a 
very bad impression on the Sultan's mind ; he was greatly 
incensed at such proceedings among members of his own 
family, for he had never suspected any of his family, nor 
had he required proof of their fealty. This was the reason 
why the king of England put off the conclusion of peace, 
for the discord that had broken out (in the Sultan's family) 
seemed likely to give him a distaste for the war, and would 
force him to accept whatever conditions he himself might 
choose to impose. The Sultan therefore commanded el- 
Melek el-Afdal to enter the country (of the rebellious 
prince), and wrote to el-Melek ez-Zaher, Prince of Aleppo, 
to go, if necessary, to the assistance of his brother (el- 
Afdal), and to lend him a strong detachment of troops. 
El-Afdal took his departure laden with honours, and on 
his arrival in Aleppo received the most cordial welcome at 
the hands of his brother, ez-Zaher. He set a splendid 
banquet before him, and made him presents of great value. 





On the 6th of Rabi'a II., 588 (April 21, 1192), the 
ambassador Yusuf returned to resume negotiations on 
behalf of the marquis. * An arrangement/ he said, *is on 
the point of being concluded between him (the marquis) 
and the Franks ; if this comes off shortly, the Franks will 
take ship for their own country ; therefore, if you delay 
any longer, you may look upon all the negotiations on the 
subject of peace as though they had never taken place/ 
The Sultan was very anxious with regard to what was 
going on in the East, and was apprehensive lest (el-Melek 
el-Mansur), son of Taki ed-Din, should make an alliance 
with Bektimor, which would have precluded all possibility 
of carrying on the Holy War. This made him desirous of 
closing with the marquis's proposals, for he thought that a 
treaty with him would be an advantage. He therefore 
ordered an agreement to be drawn up, embodying the con- 
ditions set forth above, which answer he delivered to the 
envoy Yusuf, who took his departure on the 9th of the 
same month. 



On the i6th of the month Rabi'a II. (May i, 1192) we 
received a dispatch from our envoy accredited to the 
marquis, announcing that that prince had just been 
assassinated, and his soul hurled by God into hell-fire. It 


came about in the following manner :^ On Tuesday, the 
13th of the month, he had dined with the bishop, and left 
his house with a very small escort. Two of his servants 
then rushed on him, and kept on stabbing him with their 
daggers until life left the body. They were at once 
arrested and questioned, when they declared they had been 
suborned by the king of England. Two of the marquis's 
officers then assumed the command in chief, and provided 
for the protection of the citadel, until information of the 
occurrence could reach the Christian princes. Matters 
were then arranged, and order was restored in the city. 



When this prince was informed of the Sultan's displeasure, 
he sent a messenger to el-Melek el-'Adel, beseeching him 
to speak in his favour, and to ask that he should receive 
either the cities of Harran, Edessa, and Someisat, or, fail- 
ing that, the cities of Hamah, Manbej, Salemiya,^ and 
Ma'arra, and also that he should be appointed guardian to 

^ The bishop of Beauvais, grandson of Louis VI. of France, was 
then in Tyre. According to De Vinsauf (v. 6-31), the murderers 
acknowledged that they were Assassins, acting by order of the Sheikh 
of the Mountain. Ernoul (289, 290) says that Conrad had previously 
pillaged a ship belonging to this sect at Tyre. The French suspected 
King Richard. A letter from the Sheikh, absolving him, and said to 
be written in 1193 to the duke of Austria, is believed to be a forgery. 
— Rohricht, Regesta Reg. Hierosol.^ No. 715. 

~ Muhammad el-Melek el-Mansiir Nasr ed-Din was the grandson of 
Shahanshah, the elder brother of Salah ed-Din. He died in 1221. 

3 Salainiya is placed by Abu el-Feda two days from Hamah, in the 
desert to the east. 


his younger brothers. El-'Adel made several applications 
to the Sultan (in support of these requests), but obtained 
no concession from him. The Sultan gave way at last to 
the representations of all his emirs, who constantly inter- 
ceded on the prince's behalf, and he felt ashamed of his 
obstinacy; then, yielding to his natural generosity, he 
swore to fulfil a deed by which he made over to el-Mansur 
the cities of Harran, Edessa, and Someisat. This deed 
provided that the young prince should be put in possession 
of the places he had solicited as soon as he should cross 
the Euphrates (and leave Syria) ; he was to have the 
wardship of his brothers, and to give up (to the Sultan) all 
he then held (in Syria). El-Melek el-'Adel undertook to 
be responsible for the due performance of the appointed 
conditions, and asked the Sultan to append his sign- 
manual (to the deed). The Sultan refused, and he in- 
sisted. Then the Sultan tore the document into little 
pieces. This occurred on the 29th of Rabi'a IL, and put 
an end to the negotiations. The business had been 
arranged through my intervention. The Sultan was in- 
censed at the thought that one of his children's children 
(that is to say, his great nephew) should have dared to 
make such a demand. 



On the ist of Jornada I. an ambassador came from Con- 
stantinople the Great, and was received with the greatest 
honour. On the 3rd of the month he was introduced into 
t^e presence, and delivered his message. He asked, 
among other things, that the cross of the crucifixion 
should be given to him ; secondly, that the Church of the 


Resurrection and all the other churches in the Holy City 
should be made over to priests of his party ; thirdly, that 
an alliance, offensive and defensive, should be concluded 
between the two peoples. He also asked the Sultan's co- 
operation in an expedition against the island of Cyprus. 
He stayed with us for two days, and took his departure, 
accompanied by Ibn el-Bezzaz the Egyptian, who had 
been appointed our ambassador. A negative answer was 
returned to every one of his demands. It is said that the 
King of the Georgians offered two hundred thousand gold 
pieces [dmdrs] to obtain possession of the cross, and that 
his proposal was refused. 



After el-Melek el-Afdal had set out for that country, el- 
Melek el-'Adel suceeeded in softening the Sultan's heart 
and obtaining pardon for the son of Taki ed-Din. This he 
effected only after numerous interviews on the subject. 
Then the Sultan instructed me to go and ascertain the 
opinion of the emirs in el-Afdal's service upon the 
matter in hand. That prince called them all into his 
presence, and I informed the meeting of the motive with 
which the Sultan had sent me to them. Emir Hossam 
ed-Din Abu el-Heija then spoke, and made answer in the 
following terms : * We are the servants and slaves of the 
Sultan. It may be that the young man, being afraid, will 
form an alliance with another. It would be quite im- 
possible for us to carry on two wars at the same time, one 
against Moslems, and the other against the infidels ; if the 


Sultan wishes us to fight the Moslems, he must let us 
make peace with the infidels ; then we will cross the 
Euphrates and fight, but it must be under his leadership. 
If, on the other hand, he wishes us to keep on the Holy- 
War, let him pardon the Moslems and grant them peace.' 
All present applauded this answer. The Sultan then re- 
lented, ordered a fresh deed to be drawn up, which he con- 
firmed by oath and sent to the son of Taki ed-Din, append- 
ing his sign-manual to the document. El-'Adel then 
asked of the Sultan those provinces (of Syria) which had 
still remained in the possession of Taki ed-Din's son after 
his assertion of independence. Negotiations, in which I 
acted as go-between, then opened between the two sides 
as to what the Sultan should receive in return for the 
provinces he was to give up. It was finally arranged that 
he (el-Melek el-'Adel) should receive the provinces he 
asked for, and should make over (to the Sultan) his 
possessions in Syria near the Euphrates. The castles of 
el-Kerak, esh-Shobek, and es-Salt, the district of el-Belka,^ 
and the appanages held by the prince in Egypt were to be 
excepted, but he was to give up el-Jiza- to the Sultan. He 
was, besides, to furnish the Sultan with sixteen thousand 
sacks of corn annually, to be sent from es-Salt and the 
Belka to Jerusalem ; the crops of the current year he was 
to retain, except those in the districts beyond the 
Euphrates, which were to belong to the Sultan. Salah 
ed-Din signed this agreement, and on the 8th of the 
month Jomada I. (el-'Adel) set out to conclude the busi- 
ness with Taki ed-Din's son, and to set that prince's mind 
at rest. 

1 The Be/ka, or 'empty land,' was the country beyond Jordan, in 
Gilead and Moab. Es-Salt (the SaltJis Hieraticus) is the capital of 
Gilead, S. of the River Jabbok. 

2 Gizeh, S. of Cairo. 




The Franks — may God confound them ! — seeing that the 
Sultan had sent his troops away, went up and attacked 
ed-Darun, in the hope of taking it. The governor of this 
place was 'Alem ed-Din Kaisar, and it was then held by 
his Heutenants. On the 9th of Jornada I. (May 24, 1192) 
the enemy's infantry and cavalry began to storm the place 
smartly. Sappers belonging to Aleppo and attached to 
the outpost on guard before Acre had been suborned by 
the king of England, and they now succeeded in driving 
a mine under the fortress and setting it on fire. Upon 
this the garrison asked for an armistice to allow them time 
to communicate with the Sultan^ but the enemy disregarded 
them, and attacked the place furiously until they carried it 
by storm. Those of the garrison whom God had pre- 
ordained to marjiyrdom there met their death, the rest 
were made prisoners. God's bidding is a decided decree ! 
(Kuran xxxiii. 38.) 



After having taken the necessary steps and established a 
garrison of picked men in ed-Darun, the Franks marched 
off and halted at a place called el-Hesi,^ close to the 
mountains of el-Khalil (Hebron). They arrived there on 
the 14th. They spent the day there, and then, having 

^ Tell el-Hesi^ the ancient Lachish, is 14 miles S.E. of Ascalon, and 
24 miles N.E. of Darum, at the foot of the Hebron hills. 



made their preparations, they marched in the direction of 
a stronghold called Mejdel Yaba.^ They made their ap- 
pearance before that place lightly-armed, for they had left 
their tents at el-Hesi. The garrison left by the Sultan in 
Mejdel Yaba came out and engaged the enemy, and in the 
furious fight that followed they killed a count of great 
renown among the Franks. The Moslems lost only one 
man ; he had dismounted to pick up his lance, and was 
trying to remount his horse, which was very restive, when 
the Franks swooped down on him and killed him. The 
enemy then returned to their camp, which they reached 
the same evening, having failed to execute their design — 
God be praised ! 



On the i6th of Jomada I. we received a dispatch from 
Emir Hossam ed-Din Bishara, informing us that the 
garrison left in Tyre, and consisting of one hundred horse- 
men, had been reinforced by about fifty men from Acre, 
after which they had made an incursion into Moslem 
territory in search of booty. The detachment of troops 
left to guard that part of the country had fallen upon the 
invaders and killed fifteen of them, without losing a single 
one of their number. The enemy's plans had been 
frustrated, and they had been obliged to retreat. 

^ Mejdel Ydba is 40 miles N. of Tell el-Hesi. The stronghold may- 
be the castle of Mirabel, at Ras el-'Ain, 2 miles W. of the village, 
which, however, had been dismantled by Sal^h e;i-Din. 




Seeing that the enemy's troops had begun to over-run 
the open country, the Sultan sent out on all sides to 
summon his own soldiers back. The first of the leaders 
to arrive was Bedr ed-Din Dolderim, who brought with 
him a great number of Turkomans. The Sultan went out 
to meet him, and received him with every mark of honour. 
Then, on the 17th of the month of Jomada I., Tzz ed-Dtn 
Ibn el-Mokaddem came in, with a fine army and well- 
appointed engines of war, whereat the Sultan was greatly 
pleased. The enemy left el-Hesi, and encamped at the 
place where the road divides, leading in one direction to 
Ascalon, in the other to Beit-Jibrin,^ and several strong- 
holds belonging to the Moslems. When the Sultan was 
informed of this, he gave an order for the army to advance 
in the direction of the Franks. Abu el-Heija (nick-named) 
the Fat, Bedr ed-Din Dolderim and Ibn el-Mokaddem, set 
out one after another at the head of their troops ; but the 
prince himself, who was suffering* from illness, remained 
behind in Jerusalem. As soon as the confounded enemy 
perceived that the Moslem army was advancing, they 
retreated as speedily as they could without striking a blow. 
Letters from our emirs subsequently informed us that the 
Franks were marching upon Ascalon. 

I Beti/tMn is 11 miles N.E. of Tell el-Hesi. It was fortified by 
King Fulk in 1134 A.D. 





On Saturday, the 23rd of Jornada I., a courier came from 
the army, bringing news that the enemy had come out with 
their cavalry, infantry, and a large number of followers, 
and had encamped on Tell es-Safia.^ The Sultan im- 
mediately despatched a messenger to the Moslem army, 
warning them to keep a good look out, and summoning 
the emirs forthwith to Jerusalem to hold a council of war, 
and decide what was to be done. On the 26th of Jornada I. 
the Franks left Tell es-Safia, and took up their position 
to the north of en-Natrun. A body of Moslem Arabs, 
who had been on a pillaging expedition in the neigh- 
bourhood of Jaffa, had halted for the night to divide 
the spoil, when they were attacked by the enemy's 
troops whom they did not know to be on the march. 
They were all taken prisoners, excepting six men, who 
ran to carry the news to the Sultan. According to the 
reports of our spies and watchmen, the enemy were 
waiting at en-Natrun for provisions and engines of war, 
which they would need during the siege. As soon as they 
had received all that was necessary, they were to advance 
upon Jerusalem. On Wednesday an envoy arrived from 
the Franks, accompanied by a former servant of el- 
Meshtub's, whom they had kept with them ; he came 
on a mission with regard to Karakush and the peace. 

^ Tell es-Sdfi is ^\ miles N.W. of Beit Jibrin, and was the Blanche 
Guarde of the Franks, built by King Fulk in 1144, but dismantled by 
Salah ed-Din. En-N(itrii?t is 11 miles to the N.E. from Tell es-Safi, 
on the Jerusalem road. See p. 32. 




On Wednesday, the 27th of Rabi'a I./ the Franks left 
en-Natrun, and moved their camp to Beit-Nuba, (a village) 
in the plain, a day's journey from the Holy City. On 
receiving this news, the Sultan called his emirs together, 
and took counsel with them as to what done. 
It was decided that each emir should be entrusted with 
the defence of a certain portion of the walls ; and that the 
Sultan should command the rest of the troops, who were 
to be lightly armed, in their engagements with the enemy. 
Each division of the garrison, knowing the part of the 
walls it was to defend, was to hold itself in readiness 
to receive the enemy. In case of need these troops 
were to make sorties, but otherwise they were to remain 
at their posts. Proclamations containing instructions 
were dispatched to all the emirs. The road from Jaffa 
to the enemy's camp was constantly crowded with 
convoys of provisions for the Franks, and the Sultan 
commanded the advanced guard to take every oppor- 
tunity of attacking them. Bedr ed-Din Dolderim, who 
was (at that time) on duty at the head of the advanced 
guard, posted a goodly number of picked men in ambush 
on either side of this road. A detachment of the 
enemy's cavalry, acting as escort to a convoy of pro- 
visions, charged the men in ambush, thinking they had to 
do with a small body of Moslems only. A desperate 
conflict ensued, in which the enemy was worsted, having 
thirty men killed and a number taken prisoner. The 

-■ The story goes back to April 13. 


latter were taken to Jerusalem, and entered the city on the 
19th of Jornada I., where their arrival created a profound 
sensation. This blow disconcerted the enemy, whilst it 
gave fresh courage to the advanced guard, inspiring them 
even to charge the whole Frank army, and to take up 
a position close to the enemy's camp. As the convoys 
continued to come in, a detachment of our men, with 
a strong force of Arabs, was sent out to lay an ambush. 
A convoy, escorted by a large body of soldiers, came 
along, and the Arabs advanced to stop it. They were 
attacked' by the cavalry of the escort, and gave way, 
retreating towards the spot where the Moslems were 
concealed. The latter, who were Turks, rushed from 
their ambush and hurled themselves on the enemy, killing 
several men, and making a number of prisoners. They 
themselves had a good number wounded. This encounter 
took place on the 3rd of Jornada II. 



The Sultan had commanded the Egyptian army to begin 
its march, and to keep a constant look-out as soon as 
it neared the enemy. These troops halted at Bilbeis 
for several days, until the convoys were collected. The 
whole train then set out for Syria, never suspecting 
that Arab miscreants were keeping the enemy informed 
of its movements. When (the king of England) received 
certain information that the caravan was close at hand, 
he commanded his army to keep a good look-out and 
to hold itself in readiness, while a thousand horsemen 
set out, each of whom took a foot-soldier in front of 


him. In this way it (the army) came to Tell es-Safia, 
where it spent the night ; and he proceeded to es-Satia, 
where he ordered a good number (of foot-soldiers) to 
be taken on the horses of the cavalry, and advanced 
as far as the water east of el-Hesi.^ The Sultan, who 
had received intelligence of the enemy's movements, 
sent to warn the caravan. Those who were sent on 
this service were Akher Aslem, Altonba el-'Adli, and 
other eminent officers. They had instructions to take 
the caravan through the desert, and to avoid the neigh- 
bourhood of the Franks, for an encounter was to be 
dreaded above all things. They brought the caravan 
by the road which they had just followed, thinking 
that there was nothing to fear, as they had performed 
the journey in safety. They were also anxious to take 
the shortest road. When they came to the water called 
el-Khuweilfa,'^ everyone was allowed to disperse in order 
to water the beasts. The enemy, who were then posted 
at the spring head of el-Hesi, were informed of this 
by the Arabs. They lost not a moment in setting out, 
and surprised the caravan a little before dawn. Felek 
ed-Din, el-Melek el-'Adel's own brother, who was in 
command of the Egyptian troops, had been advised by 
Emir Aslem to set out during the night, and gain the 
top of the mountains by a quick march ; but he had not 
followed the suggestion, fearing lest the caravan should 
get scattered in a night-march. He had given orders 

^ King Richard brought supplies from Ascalon. According to De 
Vinsauf, he himself slept at Galatia {Jelediyeh)^ 6 miles W. of Tell es- 
Sati. There is a stream at Tell el-Hesi, which is 12 miles S.W. of 
Tell es-Safi. 

2 El-Khuweilfah, called the ' Round Cistern ' by De Vinsauf (v. 4)5 
has round masonry wells like those at Beersheba. It lies at the foot 
of the Hebron hills, 11 miles N. of Beersheba, and 14 miles S.E. of 
Tell el-Hesi. 


that no one was to start until the following morning. 
We were told that when this was reported to the king 
of England he did not believe it ; but he mounted, and 
set out with the Arabs and a small escort. When he 
came up to the caravan, he disguised himself as an Arab, 
and went all round it. When he saw that quiet reigned 
in their camp, and that everyone was fast asleep, he 
returned, and ordered his troops into the saddle. At 
daybreak he took the great caravan unawares, falling 
on it with his infantry and cavalry. Those among them 
(Egyptian troops) who passed for brave men were glad 
to owe their lives to the swiftness of their horses. All the 
people fled towards the caravan, closely pursued by the 
enemy, who, when they saw the caravan, turned back to 
attack it from their fight with the escort. This caravan 
had originally been divided into three parts, the first of 
which, under the escort of a detachment of Arabs and 
el-Melek el-'Adel's troops, had taken the road by el- 
Kerak ; the second, also escorted by Arabs, had taken 
the road leading through the desert ; the third was the 
one seized by the enemy. Camels, bales, everything 
belonging to the travellers, and the travellers them- 
selves, were carried off by the enemy. This was a most 
disgraceful event ; it was long since Islam had sustained 
so serious a disaster. There were (nevertheless) several 
chiefs of great renown — such as Khoshtekin el-Jer^ji, 
Felek ed-Din, and the sons of el-Jaweli — with the 
Egyptian army on this occasion. According to one 
report we received the enemy had about one hundred 
horsemen killed ; according to another account they lost 
pnly ten men. No one of importance on the Moslem side 
was killed, excepting YClsuf, the chamberlain, and the 
younger son of el-Jaweli, A baggage train belonging to 
the Sultan, in the charge of Aibek el-'Azizi, was so bravely 


defended by that officer, that it escaped the general 
disaster. This advanced him very greatly in the prince's 
favour. The people were scattered in the desert, throwing 
away all the valuables they had, and he was fortunate who 
managed to escape with his life. The enemy collected 
all they could find — horses, mules, camels, property of all 
sorts, and everything that had any value — and forced the 
camel-drivers, the muleteers and grooms, to go with their 
respective beasts. The king set out to rejoin his army, 
laden with spoil ; he halted at el-Khuweilfa to take water, 
and then made his way to el-Hesi. I have been told by 
one of those he took prisoner that that night a report was 
spread amongst the Franks that the Sultan's army was 
advancing, and that they thereupon took to flight, abandon- 
ing their booty ; but as soon as they found it was a false 
alarm, they returned to their spoils. However, during their 
absence, a number of the Moslem prisoners had succeeded 
in making their escape, the man in question being among 
the number. I asked him what number of camels and 
horses he thought the enemy had taken, and he replied : 
' About three thousand camels, and about the same number 
of horses. As to the prisoners, there were five hundred 
of them.' This disastrous occurrence took place on the 
morning of Tuesday, the nth of Jornada II. In the 
evening of that day I was seated in the Sultan's tent, 
when one of the young memluks attached to the stables 
came in, and informed him of what had just happened. 
Never was the Sultan more grieved or rendered more 
anxious. I tried to calm and comfort him, but he would 
hardly listen to me. This is what occurred. Akher 
Aslem had advised that the caravan should be taken 
up to the top of the hills ; but his advice was not 
taken. He himself went up into the mountains with his 
colleagues, and was there at the time the caravan was 


surprised. The enemy did not suspect his being there, 
and not a single one of them appeared in the place 
where he was. The Frank cavalry pursued the Moslems 
in their headlong flight, while their foot-soldiers were en- 
gaged in collecting the property our men had abandoned. 
The Master. of the Horse, seeing the cavalry of the Franks 
at a distance from their foot, came down with the horsemen 
he had with him, and fell on the foot-soldiers unawares, 
killing several of them, and carrying off some of the 
baggage animals. The mule ridden by the messenger 
himself (who brought the news to the Sultan) was part 
of the booty. The enemy then marched back to the 
camping-place (of the main body of their army), which 
they reached on Friday, the i6th of Jomada 11. , a day 
of great rejoicing among them. After that they moved 
their tents back again to the plain of Beit-Nuba, and then 
came to the serious determination of marching on Jerusalem. 
Their spirits were raised by having taken such store of 
treasure, such numbers of camels and other baggage 
animals, as to enable them to transport their various 
supplies. They posted a detachment of troops close to 
Lydda, to protect the road by which their convoys were 
to travel, and they sent Count Henry to bring in all the 
soldiers then in Tyre, Tripoli, and Acre. When the Sultan 
saw that they were preparing to march upon Jerusalem, 
he apportioned the defence of the walls among his emirs, 
and bade them get everything ready to withstand a 
siege. He also took care to pollute all the water near 
the Holy City, to stop up the springs, destroy the cisterns, 
and fill up the wells ; and this he did so energetically 
and with such thoroughness that in all the neighbour- 
hood there was not left a drop of water fit to drink. One 
must bear in mind that it is no use to sink wells for 
drinking-water anywhere near Jerusalem, for this great 


mountain is of the hardest rock. The Sultan also sent 
to all the provinces, commanding that troops should be 
forwarded to him. 



When el-Melek el-Afdal received the Sultan's commands 
to return (see Chapter CXLIII.), he had just reached 
Aleppo. He started at once, heart-broken and inwardly 
vexed at the message, and came to Damascus. There he 
stayed, indulging his feelings of discontent by not returning 
to duty. The news with regard to the Franks having now 
become very serious, the Sultan sent a messenger to 
summon him. El-Afdal could delay no longer, and set 
out with the troops he had brought with him from the 
East (the districts round the Euphrates), reaching 
(Jerusalem) on Thursday, the 19th of Jomada H. The 
Sultan went out to meet him, and dismounted at el- 
'Azeriya^ to receive him, and to gratify his wounded 
feelings by this mark of honour. El-Afdal then took up 
his position on the ridges near Jerusalem to watch the 
enemy, having under his command the Sultan's son, el- 
Melek ez-Zafer, and Kotb ed-Din. 



On the night preceding Thursday, the 19th of Jomada II., 
the Sultan summoned his emirs to him. Abu el-Heija 

^ EI-Azeriye/i, ' Place of the Lazar-house,' is Bethany, on Olivet, 
one mile E. of Jerusalem. 


the Fat, who could hardly move, and was obliged to sit in 
a chair in the Sultan's tent, came to the council, as did 
also el-Meshtub, the officers who had formerly served 
under Asad ed-Din (Shirkuh), and all the other leaders. 
The Sultan then commanded me to address them, en- 
couraging them to continue the Holy War, and I spoke to 
them such words as God suffered me to call to mind on 
that subject. I said among other things : * When the 
Prophet — pray God for him ! — was suffering great tribula- 
tion, his comrades swore to fight for him to the death. 
That is an example which it behoves us, above all others, 
to imitate. Then let us meet together at the Sakhra and 
swear to stand by one another to the death. Perhaps the 
sincerity of our purpose will obtain for us the boon of 
seeing the enemy driven back.' All who were present 
applauded my suggestion, and promised to put it into 
practice. The Sultan remained for some time without 
speaking, in the attitude of a man who is reflecting, and 
everyone respected his silence^ ; then he spoke in the 
following terms : ' Praise be to God and a blessing on His 
Messenger! You to-day are the army and the support of 
Islam. Remember that the blood of the Moslems, their 
treasures and their children, are under your protection, 
and that there are none besides yourselves among Moslems 
who can stand up against this enemy. If you give way — 
which may God forbid ! — they will roll up this land like the 
rolling up of a scroll (Kuran xxi. 104), and you will be 
answerable, for it was you who undertook to defend it ; 
you have received money from the public treasury, and on 
you alone depends the safety of Moslems throughout the 
land. I wish you well.' Self ed-Din el-Meshtub then 
spoke, saying : * My lord, we are your servants and slaves. 

' Lit., ' and the people were as still as if a bird was on their heads.' 


You have been gracious to us, and made us great, and 
mighty, and rich ; we have nothing but our necks, and 
they are in your hands. By God ! not one among us will 
turn back from helping you till we die.' All who were 
present gave utterance to the same sentiment, and their 
cath reassured the Sultan's mind and solaced his heart. 
He then ordered the usual meal to be served, after which 
the officers withdrew. The close of that Thursday saw 
everyone hard at work and preparations in full swing. In 
the evening we went to the Sultan's tent as usual on duty, 
and sat up with him part of the night, but he was not as 
cheerful as usual. We said the night prayer together, 
which was the signal for everyone to withdraw, and I was 
leaving with the rest, when he called me back. I remained 
standing before him, and he asked me if I had heard 
the latest news. I replied that I had not. He then 
said : ' I have had a communication from Abu el-Heija 
' the Fat ' to-day, reporting that many of the memluks 
had come to him, and that we had been censured for our 
decision respecting the siege, and proposing to shut our- 
selves up in the city. They said that no advantage could 
result from such a course, and that if we shut ourselves up 
in the citadel we should meet the same fate as the garrison 
of Acre, whilst in the meantime all the Moslem land would 
fall into the hands of the enemy ; that it would be better 
to risk a pitched battle ; then, if God grants us the 
victory, we should be masters of all they now hold ; that 
if not, we should lose the Holy City, but we should save 
the army ; and that our forces used to be able to protect 
Islam without having possession of the Holy City.' Now 
the Sultan had an affection for Jerusalem that almost sur- 
passes imagination ; this message therefore was a great 
grief to him. I spent the whole night with him, and it 
was one of those that we spent in the path of God. The 


message which had been sent to him contained the follow- 
ing passage : ' If you wish us to remain in the Holy City, 
you must stay with us, or else leave some member of your 
family in command ; for the Kurds will not obey the 
Turks, and the Turks in like manner will never obey the 
Kurds.' It was therefore determined that the Sultan 
should leave his (great-nephew), Mejed ed-Din, son of 
Ferrukh-Shah, and Lord of B'albek, in Jerusalem. He 
had at first proposed to shut himself up in the city, but 
was obliged to give up this idea on account of the great 
danger that the cause of Islam would thereby run. I 
found him still watching at dawn ; it gave me great con- 
cern to see him, and I begged him to take an hour's rest. I 
had hardly left him before I heard the muezzin calling 
to prayer, and I had barely time to wash, for day was 
already beginning to break. As I used sometimes to say 
the morning prayer with the Sultan, I repaired once more 
to him, and found him washing again. When we had 
performed the prayer together, I said : ' I have an idea ; 
have I permission to tell you what is in my mind ?' He 
gave me leave. ' Your Highness,' I said, ' is weighed 
down with anxiety, your soul is overburdened with care, 
you can hardly bear up. Earthly means are useless ; you 
can only turn to God Almighty. To-day is Friday, the 
most blessed day in the week, the day when prayer is 
most heard, and we are here in the most blessed of places. 
Let the Sultan perform ablution, and then distribute alms 
in secret, so that no one knows from whence they come ; 
then say a prayer of two rek'a between the azan and the 
ikhna, beseeching your Lord under your breath, and con- 
fiding all your anxieties, confessing your own inability to 
carry out what you have undertaken. It may be that God 
will take compassion on you and will grant your prayer.' 
Now the Sultan held a sincere belief in all the doctrines of 


the faith, and practised absolute submission to all the pre- 
cepts of God's law. I then left his presence. Afterwards, 
at the time of prayer in the mosque, I prayed at his side 
in the Aksa, and he said two rek'a, and bowed himself, 
praying in a low voice ; his tears rolled down on to his 
prayer-carpet. Then the congregation withdrew. During 
the evening of the same day we were on duty with him as 
usual, and behold ! he received a dispatch from Jurdik, 
who was at that time in command of the advanced guard. 
It contained the following words : ' The whole of the 
enemy's forces came out on horseback and took up their 
position on the top of the fe/l, after which they returned 
to their camp. We have sent out spies to ascertain what 
is going on.' On the Saturday morning another despatch 
arrived, which ran as follows : ' Our spy has returned, and 
brings intelligence that discord is rife among the enemy ; 
one party is anxious to push on to the Holy City, 
the others wish to return to their own territory. The 
French insist upon advancing on Jerusalem^ : " We left 
our own country," they say, " only for the sake of the 
Holy City, and we will not return until we have taken it." 
To this the king of England replies : " All the springs in 
the neighbourhood of the city have been polluted, so that 
there is not a drop of water to be had ; where, then, shall 
we find water .'*" They said : "We will drink the stream 
of Teku'a,'- which is about a parasang from Jerusalem." 
" How could we water there .'*" said he. " We will divide 
the army into two sections," they replied ; ^'one will ride 

^ According to De Vinsauf, Richard alone was anxious to reach 
Jerusalem, and the French were not. 

2 Tek-uHa (Tekoah of the Old Testament) is 10 miles S. of Jerusalem. 
The water intended was perhaps that of the aqueduct, which has its 
head W. of Teku'a, and which may have been available near Beth- 


out to the watering-place, while the other will remain close 
up to the city to carry on the siege, and we will go to 
water once each day." To this the English king made 
answer : " As soon as one division of the army has gone to 
the watering-place with their beasts, the garrison will sally 
out from the city and attack the troops that remain, and 
destroy all Christendom." They finally determined to 
elect three hundred from among the chief men, who in 
their turn were to elect twelve, who were to choose out 
three of their number to finally decide the question. They 
spent the night awaiting the decision of the three. '^ 

On the morning of the following day, the 2Tst of 
Jomada II., they broke up their camp in consequence of 
the decision that was given, by which they had undertaken 
to abide. They took the road to Ramla, that is to say, re- 
treated in the direction whence they had come ; but their 
troops, armed from head to foot, occupied the position 
until the whole of the baggage had been removed. When 
the Sultan heard from several different quarters that the 
enemy had returned to Ramla, he rode out at the head of 
his troops, and everyone gave way to the greatest rejoicing. 
Still, as he knew the enemy had secured a number of 
camels and other baggage-animals, he grew apprehensive 
for Egypt, for the king of England had been plainly 
inclined to invade that country on several former occa- 

^ The Franks retreated from Beit Nuba on July 6, 1192, by advice 
of a council consisting of five Frenchmen, five Templars, five Hos- 
pitallers, and five nobles of the kingdom of Jerusalem. The policy 
recommended was an attack on Egypt, as Salah ed-Din feared. 




The Sultan, relieved from anxiety by the enemy's retreat, 
ordered to be brought before him the ambassador of Count 
Henry, who sent saying, 'The king of England has given 
me all the land on the coast, and it is now in my hands. 
Now give me back my other lands, and I will make peace 
with you and be as one of your children.^ These words 
put the Sultan into such a rage, that he meditated using 
violence to the ambassador. He commanded him to 
rise. But he said, ' Wait and listen to this : the Count is 
anxious to know how much of the country that is now in 
your hands you will give him ?' The Sultan replied by 
reprimanding the ambassador, and commanded that he 
should be led away. On the 23rd of Jomada II. he sent 
for him, and addressed him as follows: * All negotiations 
between us must be restricted to Tyre and Acre, and 
must proceed on the basis of the conditions accepted by 
the marquis.* After this Haji Yusuf Sahib el-Meshtub 
came from the Frank camp ; he stated that he had been 
sent by the king of England as well as by Count Henry, 
and that the king, when the council had left, had addressed 
him as follows : ' Tell your lord you and I can go on no 
longer, and the best thing for us to do is to put an end to 
the shedding of blood. But do not think it is because I 
am weak ; it is for our common good. Act as mediator 
between the Sultan and me, and do not be deceived by the 
manoeuvre of withdrawing my camp; the ram backs for 
butting.' The king had sent two men with the Haji 
(Pilgrim) who listened to el-Meshtub's words. 

The ostensible object of this embassy was to negotiate 



for the liberty of Beha ed-Din Karakush, but the real 
motive underlying this was the arrangement of a treaty of 
peace. The Haji informed us that the Franks had left 
Ramla on their way to Jaffa, and that they were too 
exhausted to undertake any enterprise whatever. El- 
Meshtub had been summoned from Nablus to hear this 
message, and the following was the answer : ' We will make 
peace with Count Henry as Lord of Acre/ since that city 
has been granted to him ; but, as to the rest of the land, 
he must let us (make our arrangements) with the king of 
England.' The Sultan had stationed a detachment of 
troops close to Acre, to prevent the enemy from making 
incursions on the country round. But on the 22nd of the 
month a body of men left the city to over-run the neigh- 
bouring districts. This manoeuvre did not escape the 
watchfulness of the Moslems ; they planted ambushes in 
several places, and succeeded in killing and taking prisoner 
a goodly number of the marauders. 



On Friday, the 26th of the month, the ambassador from 
the Franks returned, conducted by Haji Yusuf, who was 
charged with the message in presence of their Lor\i, and it 

^ Acre was part of the royal domain. The rest of the lands, in the 
fiefs of Caesarea, Jaffa, and Ascalon, conquered by King Richard, 
were, to a great extent, the property of the Templars and Hospitallers, 
who only obeyed the Pope. Henry of Champagne had married 
Isabel, heiress of the kingdom, on the death of the marquis, and was 
acknowledged king of Jerusalem in place of Guy of Lusignan, by 
French, English, and Syrians alike. 


was ' The king of England says, I am anxious to deserve 
your friendship and goodwill ; I have no desire to be a 
Pharaoh to rule over this land, and I do not suppose you 
wish to be so either. It is not right for you to allow all 
the Moslems to perish, nor for me to suffer, all our Franks 
to be killed. Now, there is Count Henry, my sister's son,^ 
whom I have put in possession of all these districts ; I 
commend him and all his troops to you. If you invite 
him to accompany you on an expedition to the East, he 
will be willing.' The king said further : * On many occa- 
sions monks who have been turned out have petitioned 
you for churches, and you have never shown yourself 
niggardly, and now I beg you to give me a church. I 
promise to renounce all that was unpleasing to you in my 
former negotiations with el-Melek el-'Adel, and to relinquish 
all idea of it. Will you not, then, give me a barren spot, 
and the ruin of its shrine P'^ After this message had been 
delivered, the Sultan summoned his councillors together 
and asked them what reply should be sent. They one 
and all advised him to be compliant and to conclude peace, 
for the Moslems were worn out with fatigue and anxiety, 
as well as overwhelmed with the burden of their needs. 
It was therefore determined that an answer should be sent 
in the following terms : ' Since you trust us with such 
trust, and as one good turn deserves another, the Sultan will 
treat your sister's son like one of his own sons, of which 
you shall shortly receive proof. He grants you the largest 
of all the churches — the Church of the Resurrection 
{Komdma), and he will share the rest of the country with 

^ Henry of Champagne was the son of the eldest daughter of 
Louis VII. of France by Eleanor of Guienne, mother of Richard I., 
through her second marriage with Henry II. of England. He was 
thus the son of Richard's half-sister, and nephew of Philip of France. 

2 King Richard meant the ruined site of Calvary. 



you ;• the cities of the coast-districts, which you now hold, 
shall remain in your possession ; the strongholds we occupy 
in the hill country shall continue in our hands, and the 
country lying between the mountains and the coast-districts 
shall be shared equally between us ; Ascalon and the 
places beyond that city shall be demolished, and belong 
neither to you nor to us. If you are desirous of a grant of 
some of its villages you shall have them. What has been 
most bitter has been the decision as to Ascalon.' On the 
28th of the month, which was the day after his arrival, the 
ambassador took his departure, perfectly satisfied. After 
he had returned, we heard that the Franks were marching 
towards Ascalon, on their way to Egypt. We also received 
an ambassador from Kotb ed-Din, son of Kilij-Arslan, who 
brought the following message from his master : ' The 
pope is marching on Constantinople at the head of an 
immense multitude ; God Almighty alone knows how 
many they may be' — here the ambassador added that 
he had killed twelve horsemen on his way — 'send me some 
one,' the prince continued, * to whom I may give up my 
kingdom, for I am not strong enough to defend it.' The 
Sultan did not believe the statements of this message, and 
did not trouble himself about it. 




On the 29th of the month Haji Yusuf Sahib el-Meshtiib 
came to us, accompanied by Geoffrey, the ambassador from 
the king of England,^ and said : ' The king thanks the 

^ This Geoffrey was perhaps the brother of King Guy. 


Sultan for his kindness, and says : " I beg your permission 
to lodge twenty of my soldiers in the citadel at Jerusalem, 
and that the Christians and Franks dwelling in that city 
may not suffer any ill-treatment. As to the rest of the 
land, the plains and lowlands will be ours ; the hill-country 
will be yours." ' The ambassador informed us that, of his 
own accord and of good will to us, the king had given up 
all claim to the Holy City, excepting only the right of 
pilgrimage thither, but that he had said it was not on 
account of his being weak. The ambassador spent all 
Monday with us, which was the last day of the month. 
We further learnt from him that everyone (in the Frank 
camp) was anxious for peace, and that the king was abso- 
lutely obliged to return to his own country. On this occa- 
sion he had brought the Sultan a present, consisting of 
a couple of falcons. The Sultan called all his emirs 
together to consult them as to the answer that should 
be sent to this message. They decided to inform the 
ambassador that they could grant the king no rights in 
Jerusalem excepting that of pilgrimage. Then, when the 
ambassador demanded that pilgrims should not be subject 
to any tax, they made it clear that they agreed with 
him on that point. As regards Ascalon and the places 
beyond, he was told that they must absolutely be de- 
molished ;^ and when he observed that the king had spent 
large sums of money upon repairing the fortifications, el- 
Meshtub said to the Sultan : ' Let him have the corn-lands 
and villages as an indemnity for his losses,' to which the 
Sultan gave his consent ; but he demanded that ed-Darun 
and other places should be demolished, the territory belong- 
ing to the cities destroyed to be shared equally between 
the two sides. As touching the other cities and their 
dependencies, they agreed to assign all those between Jaffa 
^ Ascalon having been rebuilt by King Richard. 


and Tyre to the Franks, adding : * In every instance, when 
we cannot agree as to the possession of a village, we will 
divide it in half.' This was the answer sent to the king's 
message. The ambassador took his departure on Tuesday, 
the 1st of the month of Rejeb, taking Haji Yusuf with 
him. He had made a request that someone should be sent 
with him, to swear to the ratification of the treaty of peace, 
as soon as its preliminaries were settled ; but the Sultan 
refused, saying that he would send someone as soon as the 
treaty was definitely concluded. He loaded the ambassador 
with rich presents for the Franks in return for those they 
had sent him, for no one could outstrip him in the matter 
of presents ; his heart was so large, and his generosity to 



At a late hour of the night preceding the 3rd of Rejeb, 
Haji Yusuf and the king's ambassador returned. The 
former was received that night, and gave the Sultan his 
news, and on the morning of Thursday, the 3rd, the 
ambassador was introduced into the Sultan's presence. 
He delivered to the Sultan this message : * The king begs 
you to allow him to keep those three places^ as they are, 
and not to demolish them ; of what importance can they 
be in the eyes of so powerful a prince.-* The king is 
forced to persist in his request by the obstinacy of the 
Franks, who refuse to consent to their being given up. 
He has abandoned all claim to Jerusalem, and will not 
insist on keeping either monks or priests there, except 
only in the Church of the Resurrection. Therefore, if you 

^ The three places were Ascalon, Darun, and Gaza. 


will give him the cities in question, peace can be made on 
every point. The Franks will keep all they now possess 
from Darun to Antioch, and you will retain all that is in 
your hands ; in this way everything can be settled, and 
the king will be enabled to depart. If peace is not con- 
cluded, the Franks will not suffer him to go, and he could 
not withstand them.' See the cunning of this accursed 
man ! To obtain his own ends, he would employ first 
force, and then smooth-speaking ; and, although he knew 
he was obliged to depart, he maintained the same line of 
conduct. God alone could protect the Moslems against 
his wiles ; we never had among our enemies a man more 
crafty or bolder than he. When the Sultan received this 
message, he summoned his emirs and councillors together 
to discuss the answer that he should make, and this was what 
they finally decided : * As regards the people of Antioch, 
we are already engaged in negotiations with them direct 
concerning that city. Our ambassadors are now there, 
and if they return with a satisfactory answer, we shall 
include that place in the peace ; otherwise, it will not be 
included. Touching the cities the king wishes to possess, 
it is not a matter of great moment to us, but the Moslems 
will never consent to give them up. As regards the fortifica- 
tions of Ascalon, let the king accept Lydda, a city in the 
plain, to indemnify him for the expenses he has been at.' 
The ambassador was dismissed on the morning of Friday, 
the 4th of Rejeb. On the following day, the Sultan's son, 
el-Melek ez-Zaher, prince of Aleppo, came to visit his 
father. The Sultan was very fond of him, and showed a 
marked preference for this son, for he saw in him all the 
signs of a man favoured by fortune, and gifted with great 
talents, together with a great capacity for administering 
affairs. He therefore went out to meet him, and met him 
near el-'Azeria, for the young prince was coming up from 


the valley of the Jordan. When he saw him, he dismounted 
to do him honour, took him into his arms, and kissed his 
forehead ; then he assigned him the house of the Hos- 
pitallers^ for his lodging. On the 7th of the month Haji 
Yusuf came back alone, and informed us that the king had 
said to him : ' We cannot possibly allow a single stone to 
be thrown down from the fortifications of Ascalon ; we 
cannot suffer such a thing to be said of us in this country. 
As to the boundaries of the country, they are well defined, 
and admit of no debate.' In consequence of this informa- 
tion, the Sultan set preparations on foot for an expedition 
against the enemy to convince them by this energetic step 
that he was determined to continue the struggle. 



The Sultan was informed that the Franks had taken the 
field and were marching on Beirut ; on the loth of Rejeb 
he therefore left Jerusalem, and made a halt at a place 
called el-Jib.2 On the morning of the following day, the 
nth of the month, el-Melek el-'Adel arrived in the Holy 
City from the country near the Euphrates. He visited the 
Sakhra, and offered prayer there, after which he set out to 
rejoin the Sultan. That Prince had already left el-Jib, and 
was then at Beit-Nuba, from which place he had sent to 
Jerusalem to summon his troops. I rejoined the Sultan 
at Beit Nuba, for I had not been with him the evening he 
made preparations for his departure. On Sunday, the 
13th of Rejeb, he set out for Ramla, and came to a halt a 

^ The Muris/dn, or Hospital of St. John. 

2 El-Jib (Gibeon) is 5^ miles N.W. of Jerusalem. 


little before mid-day on the Tells between that city and 
Lydda ; there he spent the remainder of the day. The 
next morning, very early, the light armed troops rode to 
Yazur and Beit-Jibrin, threatening Jaffa, and then returned 
to the previous halting-place, where he had spent the rest 
of the day. He called a meeting of his councillors, and 
with their unanimous advice, resolved to lay siege to Jaffa. 



During the morning of Tuesday, the 15th of Rejeb, the 
Sultan started on his march for Jaffa, and encamped there 
a little before noon the same day. His army was drawn 
up in three divisions, the right and left wings resting on 
the sea ; the Sultan himself was in the centre. The right 
wing was commanded by el-Melek ez-Zaher, the left by 
el-Melek el-'Adel ; the rest of the troops were placed 
between the two wings. On the i6th of the month the 
army began to attack the city, which they thought would 
fall an easy prey. The Sultan drew up his troops in order 
of battle, and ordered the mangonels to be brought forward, 
and to be set up in position facing the weakest part of the 
walls, which happened to be on the side of the east gate ; 
he then sent his miners forward to effect a breach- in the 
wall. Then a great clamour was raised, and mighty 
shouts ; a smart attack was begun, and the miners com- 
menced a mine to the north of the east gate towards 
an angle of the curtain. This portion of the wall had 
been destroyed by the Moslems in the former siege, but 
the Franks had rebuilt it. The miners took possession of 
the mine they had sunk, and everyone thought the city 


would be taken that very day. The king of England had 
just left Acre and was going to Beirut, and it was the news 
of his movements that had induced the Sultan to lay siege 
to Jaffa. An obstinate struggle was maintained until the 
end of the day, the enemy displaying a hardy valour and 
a determined resistance that discouraged the besiegers. 
Meanwhile, the miners were just finishing their mine, 
when the besieged found means to destroy it in several 
places ; and the miners were obliged to make what haste 
they could in escaping. When the Moslem troops saw 
that it would be a matter of difficulty to capture the city, 
and that the attacking forces would have to be greatly 
increased before they could hope for success, they began 
to relax their efforts. Then the Sultan formed a resolu- 
tion worthy of himself, and commanded that the mine 
should be carried through the rest of the curtain from 
the tower to the gate, and that the mangonels should 
be brought to bear on that part of the wall that was 
already undermined. A third of the night had gone 
before he returned to the camp, which was on a U// 
facing the city, and at a little distance from it. By the 
following morning two mangonels had been set up, and 
during the day they succeeded in mounting a third. The 
Sultan rose, determined to storm the city ; but he observed 
great want of energy in the ranks, for they thought the 
mangonels that were being set up could not possibly 
produce any effect for several days to come. The Sultan, 
seeing his men irresolute and but little disposed to sup- 
port him, was obliged to drive them forward and force 
them to fight. The siege waxed hot and the garrison 
suffered greatly. As soon as our men saw that the city 
must fall they one and all lost every other feeling but a 
longing to get possession of it. The besiegers, however, 
had many wounded, both by arrows and by the missiles 


shot from the arbalists. When the besieged saw the situa- 
tion in which they were placed, they sent two ambassadors 
to the Sultan to negotiate for peace. One of the ambas- 
sadors was a (native) Christian, the other a Frank. He 
consented to receive the surrender of the city on the same 
terms, and with a stipulation for the same contribution, as 
had been imposed on the Holy City. They accepted these 
conditions, but asked for an armistice until Saturday, the 
19th of Rejeb,^ saying, if they had not received succours 
by that time, they would carry out the terms of the treaty. 
The Sultan refused to wait and the ambassador took his 
departure. The besieged made a second attempt to obtain 
a respite, but with the same result. When the Moslems 
saw the envoys going backwards and forwards, they lost 
the eagerness that had inspired them, and fought half- 
heartedly, growing more listless than usual. But at this 
juncture the miners finished their mine, and were com- 
manded by the Sultan to fill it with combustibles; these 
were set on fire, with the result that half the curtain was 
brought down. The enemy had found out beforehand 
where the fire would break out, and they had collected a 
great heap of wood behind that point, to which they set 
fire the moment the wall gave way, thus precluding any 
attempt to effect an entrance through the breach. The 
Sultan conducted the attack on the besieged with the 
greatest conceivable energy ; but what fine soldiers they 
were ! how brave and how courageous ! In spite of all 
they had suffered, they did not barricade the gate, but 
came out to fight incessantly. Our men maintained a 
desperate struggle with them, till night intervened and put 
an end to the fighting. It was useless to light fires in the 
mines that had been sunk under the walls that were still 
standing, for we could not take the place that day. The 

^ King Richard landed on August i, just at the expiry of this truce. 


Sultan was very much vexed, and, torn by conflicting 
thoughts, he regretted not having accepted the conditional 
surrender. He spent that night in the camp, and deter- 
mined to increase the number of mangonels to five ; these 
were playing on the curtain, now weakened by the mines, 
by fire, and by the operations on their side. 



By the morning of Friday, the i8th of Rejeb, the man- 
gonels had been set up, and a great quantity of stones 
collected (to be hurled from these engines) ; these had to 
be brought from the ravines and other places at some 
distance, for there was no stone anywhere near the city. 
They were brought into play on that part of the wall that 
had been undermined ; the Sultan himself, as well as his son 
el-Melek ez-Zaher, took an active part in the attack, whilst 
el-Melek el-'Adel, at the head of the troops of the left 
wing, attacked the city on the opposite side. El-'Adel was 
ill at the time. Then a mighty shout was raised, the 
drums sounded, the trumpets blared, the mangonels hurled 
their stones, and the enemy saw nothing but disaster 
threatening them on every side. The miners were actively 
engaged in setting fire to the mines, and the day had 
hardly reached its second hour, when the wall fell with 
a fall like the end of all things. At the cry, heard by all 
the people, that the curtain had fallen, there was none, 
however small his faith, who did not fly to the assault, 
and the heart of every one of the enemy trembled. They 
rushed on ; none flinched ; all were determined ; all were 
consumed with longing for the most glorious and noble of 


deaths. A cloud of dust and smoke arose. from the fallen 
wall, that darkened the heavens and hid the light of day, 
and none dared to enter the breach and face the fire. 
But when the cloud dispersed, and disclosed the wall of 
halberds and lances replacing the one that had just fallen, 
and closing the breach so effectually that even the eye 
could not penetrate within, then indeed we beheld a 
terrifying sight — the spectacle of the enemy's unwavering 
constancy, as they stood undaunted, unflinching, self- 
controlled -in every movement. I myself saw two men 
standing on the path of the rampart driving back those 
who were trying to climb through the breach. One was 
knocked down by a stone from a mangonel, and fell back- 
ward inside ; his comrade took his place at once, regard- 
less that he was exposing himself to the same fate, which 
overtook him in the twinkling of an eye, and so that none 
but the quickest sight could have distinguished one from 
the other. When the enemy saw how it must end, they 
sent two ambassadors to the Sultan to ask for their lives. 
He made answer : * Knight shall be exchanged for 
(Moslem) horseman, Turkopole for light-armed soldier, 
foot-soldier for foot-soldier. The old people shall pay the 
ransom paid by those at Jerusalem.' When the envoys 
saw that the fight in the breach was raging hotter than 
the fiercest furnace, they asked the Sultan to put a stop to 
it, in order that they might return to the city. * I cannot 
prevent the Moslems from continuing the fight,' he said. 
' Return to your own people, and tell them to retreat into 
the citadel and surrender the city to the Moslems, for 
nothing will prevent them from making their way in.' 
The envoys returned with this answer, and the enemy 
withdrew into the citadel of Jaffa, losing some on the way, 
who were killed by mistake. Our men made their way 
into the city, sword in hand, and took a great quantity of 


spoil ; stores of fine stuffs, abundance of corn, furniture, 
and even the remains of the booty taken from the caravan 
from Egypt — all fell into their hands. The armistice was 
accepted on the conditions laid down by the Sultan. 
During the afternoon of Friday — always an auspicious day 
— the Sultan received a letter from Kaimaz en-Najmi, who 
was stationed close to Acre to protect the adjoining districts 
from the sorties of the garrison ; this officer stated that the 
news of the siege of Jaffa had caused the King of England 
to abandon his project of going to Beirut, and that he had 
decided to come to the aid of the besieged city. On 
receipt of this news the Sultan resolved to bring matters to 
a speedy conclusion by insisting on the surrender of the 
citadel by men who could hope for no relief, for the fall of 
the place seemed imminent. Moreover, it was a long time 
since our troops had taken any booty, or won any ad- 
vantage over the enemy ; they were therefore most eager 
to take the place by storm. I was amongst the number 
who pointed out the necessity of forcing the enemy to 
evacuate the citadel, in order that we might occupy that 
fortress before the enemy received reinforcements. This 
also was the Sultan's wish ; but his troops, worn out by 
fatigue, by their wounds, by the heat and the smoke from 
the fire, could hardly move, and were but little disposed to 
carry out his commands. Still, he never ceased urging 
them on till a late hour of the night ; then, seeing that 
they were really too weary to do anything more, he 
mounted and rode off to his tent, which had been pitched 
close to the baggage. Those of his officers who were on 
duty joined him there, and I afterwards went to lie down 
in my tent, but I could not sleep, my mind was so 
oppressed with dread. At daybreak we heard the sound 
of the Frank trumpets, and heard that succours had come 
in to them. The Sultan sent for me at once, and said : 


' The succours have come, it is true, by sea, but there is a 
strong enough force of Moslem troops on the beach to 
prevent their landing. This is what we must do : Go and 
find el-Melek ez-Zaher, and tell him to take up a position 
in front of the south-east gate (of the city) ; you must 
make your way into the citadel with a (gw picked men, 
and bring out the garrison ; you will take possession of the 
treasures and arms that are there, making an inventory of 
them, which you will write with your own hand; this 
document you will send to el-Melek ez-Zaher, who will be 
outside the city, and will forward it to me.' He then gave 
me 'Izz ed-Din Jurdik, 'Alem ed-Din Kaisar, and Derbas el- 
Mehrani, as colleagues to help me in this undertaking. I 
set out forthwith, taking Shems ed-Din, the treasurer, with 
me. When I reached the position occupied by el-Melek 
ez-Zaher, I found him with the advanced guard on a U/l 
near the sea. He was sleeping in his coat of mail {yelbd), 
wrapped in his wadded tunic,^ and armed at all points for 
the fight. May God not leave unrewarded the good deeds 
of all these warriors who toiled in the cause of Islam ! I 
awoke him, and he got up, still half asleep, and mounted 
his horse. We rode together to the place where he was to 
take up his position by the Sultan's instructions, and on 
the way he made me explain to him the object of my 
mission. After that I entered the city of Jaffa with my 
men ; we made our way to the citadel and delivered the 
order to the Franks to evacuate the place. They made 
answer that they would obey, and began to make their 
preparations for departure. 

I Our author calls this sort of protective garment by the Persian 
name kazdghettd. Geoffrey de Vinsauf tells us that the gazeganz 
was a lorica consicta. See the collection by Gale and Fells, vol. it., 
p. 407. Also M. de Wailly's Villehardouiji^ notes, p. 40. On p. 39 of 
that work the same garment is called gainboison. Henry de Valen- 
ciennes 'wr\\.^^ gazygaji. 




Just as they were on the point of going, 'Izz ed-Din 
remarked that we ought not to allow them to depart until 
we had withdrawn the people from the city ; otherwise, 
they would probably rush on the Franks, and take all they 
had. In truth, our troops were eager to pillage the city. 
Jordik then set out to beat our men off; but as they were 
no longer under control, and were scattered about in different 
places, he was unable to get them all away. Still, in spite 
of my remonstrances, he kept on struggling with their 
obstinacy until at last it was broad daylight. Seeing how 
time was going, I said to him : ' The succours will get in, 
and the best thing we can do is to effect the evacuation of 
the citadel at once ; that was the Sultan's chief object.' 
When he saw why I was so impatient, he gave in to what 
I wanted. We took up our position at the gate of the 
citadel next to that where el-Melek ez-Zaher was stationed, 
and we got forty-nine men, with their horses and wives, to 
leave the fortress, and go. But at this juncture, those who 
were left took courage, and hardened their hearts to oppose 
us. Those who had gone out had thought that there were 
only a (ew ships come to their relief, and that these would 
not be able to give them any assistance. They did not 
know that the king of England was there with all his 
men ; and as they saw the hour of noon approach without 
any attempt being made to land, they feared that their 
comrades on the ships dared not venture, and that they 
themselves would therefore be taken and put to death. 
That is the reason why some of them left the citadel. 


But when the rescuing fleet drew nearer, and they could 
see that it consisted of five-and-thirty vessels, those who were 
left behind took new heart of grace, and, by unmistakable 
signs, made it very evident that they meant to renew 
hostilities. One of them came out to tell me that they 
had changed their minds; they donned their cuirasses once 
more, and seized their shields, and were now manning the 
walls that had only just been rebuilt, and which were stand- 
ing unfinished without battlements or parapets. Seeing 
the turn things were taking, I left the hillock on which I 
had taken my position, and which was quite close to the 
gate of the citadel, and went to 'Izz ed-Din Jurdik, who 
was posted further down the hill with the men under his 
command. I put this officer on his guard, telling him that 
the besieged had changed their minds. A few moments 
afterwards I was outside the city talking to el-Melek ez- 
Zaher, when the besieged mounted, and sallied out of the 
citadel ; they charged down in a body on our men, and 
drove them out of the city. The fugitives crowded together 
so closely in the gateway that some of them only narrowly 
escaped with their lives. A great number of camp followers 
had stopped in some of the churches — what they were 
doing there is not known ; the Franks rushed in and killed 
some of them, taking others prisoners. El-Melek ez-Zaher 
had sent me to inform his father of what was going forward, 
and as soon as the Sultan heard the news, he commanded 
the herald to sound the call to arms. The drums beat the 
charge, our soldiers ran up from all sides to take part in 
the fight, rushed into the city, and drove the enemy back 
into the citadel. When the besieged found some delay 
was taking place in landing the succours, they thought 
death was inevitable; so they sent their patriarch and the 
chatelain, with any number to guard them, to bear their 
excuses to the Sultan, and beg that a truce might be 



granted them on the same terms as before. These envoys 
were obh'ged to make their way through the hottest of the 
fight in order to reach our camp. The delay in the dis- 
embarkation of the succours was occasioned by the appear- 
ance of the city ; Moslem standards were floating in every 
quarter, and they were afraid that the citadel had already 
been taken. The noise of the waves, the yells of the com- 
batants, and the shouts of the ta/i/il and the takbir {There 
is but one God! God is great !), prevented those on board 
from hearing their own countrymen's calls. A furious 
attack was made on the garrison, and when they saw that 
in spite of the strength of the rescuing fleet, they hesitated 
to effect a landing, they felt convinced that those on board 
believed the citadel to be already taken. The fleet con- 
sisted of more than fifty vessels, among which were fifteen 
swift galleys, the king being on board of one of the galleys. 
At this point one of the besieged committed himself into 
the keeping of the Messiah, and jumped from the citadel 
on to the pier ; he came down unhurt, for it was sandy. 
He then ran to the edge of the water, and got into a galley 
which put out for him ; this put him on board the king's 
galley, and to him the man explained how things stood. 
As soon as the king heard that the citadel was still holding 
out, he made all speed for the shore, and his galley — which 
was painted red, its deck being covered with a red awning, 
and flying a red flag — was the first to land the men on 
board. In less than an hour all the galleys had landed 
their men under my very eyes. They then charged the 
Moslems, scattering them in all directions, and driving 
them out of the harbour. As I was on horseback, I started 
off at a gallop to tell the Sultan. I found him engaged 
with the two envoys, pen in hand, just about to write, 
giving them grace. I whispered to him what had happened ; 
then, without writing anything, he turned to them, and 


began to talk to divert their attention. A few moments 
afterwards some of the Moslems came up, flying before the 
enemy ; he at once called to his troops to mount, had the 
envoys arrested, and ordered the baggage and the supplies 
to be transported to Yaziir. The troops set out on their 
march, abandoning an enormous number of bales in which 
was packed the booty taken at Jaffa, and which they had 
no means of carrying away. The heavy baggage was sent 
off, and the Sultan remained where he was, spending the 
night there with a detachment of light cavalry. The king 
of England came right up to the position the Sultan had 
occupied during the attack on the city ; and, as the garrison 
had come out by his orders to join him, he found himself 
at the head of a large body of troops. Many of our mem- 
luks were with them, and he had several interviews with 



Abu Bekr, the chamberlain in el-Melek el-'Adel's service, 
then received an invitation to visit (the king). Aibek, a 
follower of el-Melek el-'A?iz, Sonkor, one of el-Meshtub's 
followers, and several others were with him. He found 
several memluks of high rank,^ who were treated with 
great cordiality by the king, and whom he often sum- 
moned to his presence. He found also several of our 
emirs there, such as Bedr ed-Din Dolderim, and others. 
When all had met together in his presence, he spoke half 
seriously and half in joke, and, among other things, h^ 
said : * This Sultan is mighty, and there is none greater 
or mightier than him in this land of Islam. Why, then, 

^ Beha ed-Din omits to say that they were prisoners. 



did he make off at my first appearance? By God! I 
was not even armed or ready to fight ; I am still wearing 
only the shoes I wore on board. Why, then, did you 
retreat ?' And again he said : ' Great and good God ! I 
should have thought he could not have taken Jaffa in two 
months, and yet he made himself master of it in two 
days !' He then turned to Abu Bekr, and addressed him 
as follows : * Greet the Sultan from me, and tell him that I 
beseech him, in God's name, to grant me the peace I ask 
at his hands ; this state of things must be put a stop to ; 
my own country beyond the seas is being ruined. There 
is no advantage either to you or me in suffering the present 
condition of things to continue.' The envoys then took 
their leave, and Abu Bekr came before the Sultan to 
inform him of what the king had said. This was on the 
evening of Saturday, the 19th of Rejeb. Then, when the 
Sultan had taken the advice of his council of state, he 
commanded that an answer should be written to the king, 
couched in the following terms : * You began by asking for 
peace on certain terms, and at that time the question of 
Jaffa and Ascalon formed the main point at issue ; Jaffa 
now is in ruins ; you can have the country from Tyre to 
Csesarea.' Abu Bekr took this answer back to the king, 
and returned accompanied by an envoy from the Franks, 
who came to the Sultan to say : * The king sends you this 
answer : Among the Franks it is customary for a man to 
whom a city has been granted to become the ally and 
servant of the giver ; if, therefore, you give me these two 
cities, Jaffa and Ascalon, the troops I leave there will be 
always at your service, and, if you have any need of me, I 
will hasten to come to you and be at your service, and you 
know that I can serve you.' To this the Sultan returned 
the following answer : * Since you trust with such trust in 
me, I propose that we share the two cities. Jaffa and 


what is beyond it shall be yours, whilst Ascalon and what 
is beyond it shall be mine.' The two envoys returned, and 
the Sultan went to join the baggage at Yazur, where the 
camp had been pitched. He then resolved to demolish 
that place as well as Beit-Dajan,^ and left his miners there 
for that purpose under the protection of the advanced 
guard. He came to Ramla on Sunday, the 20th of Rejeb, 
and there received a visit from the Frank ambassador, 
who came in company with Abu Bekr, the chamberlain. 
By the Sultan's orders the ambassador was received with 
great honour. He was charged to deliver the king's thanks 
for the concession of Jaffa, and to renew his request for 
the possession of Ascalon. He added that, if peace were 
concluded within six days, the king would have no occa- 
sion to spend the winter in Syria, and would return to his 
own country. Without a moment's hesitation the Sultan 
returned the following answer : ' It is absolutely impossible 
for us to give up Ascalon, and in any case the king will be 
obliged to spend the winter here. He knows full well that, 
if he departs, all the country he has conquered will fall 
into our hands without fail ; that will most certainly 
happen, please God, even if he remains. If he can 
manage to spend the winter here, far from his people, and 
two months' journey from his native land, whilst he is still 
in the vigour of his youth and at an age that is usually 
devoted to pleasure, how much easier is it for me to remain 
here not only during the winter, but during the summer 
also ? I am in the heart of my own country, surrounded 
by my household and by my children, and able to get all I 
want. Moreover, I am an old man now, I have no longer 
any desire for the pleasures of this world ; I have had my 
fill of them, and have renounced them for ever. The 

^ Beit Dejan is 6 miles S.E. of Jaffa, Ydziir 35. 


soldiers who serve me in the winter are succeeded by 
others in the summer. And, above all, I believe that I am 
furthering God's cause in acting as I do. I will not cease 
therefrom until God grants victory to whom He will.' 
After having received this answer, the ambassador asked 
and obtained permission to visit el-Melek el-'Adel. He 
travelled to his tent, which was in rear, because he was ill, 
at a place called Mar Samwil/ and the envoy had many 
persons with him. Soon after this the Sultan received 
intelligence that an army of the enemy had set out from 
Acre in order to succour the city of Jaffa ; he therefore 
called his councillors together, and, with their unanimous 
advice, determined to oppose the enemy, and whilst the 
rest withdrew with the baggage to the mountains, the light- 
armed troops were to march against the Franks, and to 
avail themselves of any opportunity that might offer, 
otherwise they were to return ; this would be better than 
to give the Franks time to collect their forces, when our 
men would have to retreat towards the mountains, looking 
as if they fled, whereas now they would appear to be the 
attacking party. It was on the evening of Monday, the 2ist 
of Rejeb, that the Sultan issued the order for the baggage to 
be transported to the mountains. On the following morn- 
ing he set out with a small escort for the 'Auja, and had 
come to a halt on the banks of that river when intelligence 
was brought him that the enemy's forces had entered 
Caisarea. This put a stop to any idea of surprising that 
army ; but he learnt that the king of England was 
stationed outside Jaffa with a very small body of men, his 
camp consisting of nothing but a few tents ; he therefore 
determined to seizs this opportunity of surprising that 
camp, and thus realizing, at any rate, part of his plan. In 

2 Ned/ Samwil (Montjoie of the Franks) is 4^ miles N.W. of 


pursuit of this design, he set out as soon as night began 
to close in; preceded by a few Arabs, who acted as 
guides, he marched all through the night, and reached the 
vicinity of the camp early in the morning. When he saw- 
that it consisted of only about a dozen tents, he entertained 
a strong hope of capturing it as it stood, and charged 
headlong down on the enemy. But the Franks displayed 
such hardihood in the face of death that our troops lost 
heart at their sturdy resistance, and were obliged to draw 
off", and to content themselves with completely surrounding 
the camp, though at some little distance. By the will of 
God I was not present at this fight, being kept behind 
with the baggage by an attack of illness from which I was 
suffering ; but I learnt from a man who was there that, 
according to the largest computation, they had but seven- 
teen horsemen, while, according to the lowest reckoning, 
they numbered but nine ; their infantry was under a 
thousand ; other accounts say three hundred ; and others, 
again, give a larger number. The Sultan was greatly 
chagrined at what had happened, and went from squadron 
to squadron making them the most liberal promises if they 
would return to the charge ; but no one responded to his 
appeal excepting his son, el-Melek ez-Zaher, who was pre- 
paring to rush on to the enemy when he was held back by 
his father. I have been told that on this occasion el- 
Meshtub's brother, el-Jenah, said to the Sultan : ' Send for 
your servants who beat the people on the day we took 
Jaffa, and who took away the booty from them.' It must 
be noted that the terms granted on the surrender of Jaffa 
had been a cause of great annoyance throughout the army, 
for it had deprived them of the opportunity of pillage. 
When the Sultan saw the temper of his men, he realized 
that he could not remain in face of this handful of Franks 
and do nothing, for that would have been a grievous blow 


to his reputation. I have been assured by men who were 
there, that on that day the king of England, lance in 
hand, rode along the whole length of our army from right 
to left, and not one of our soldiers left the ranks to attack 
him. The Sultan was wroth thereat, and left the battle- 
field in anger for YazCir, where he came to a halt on 
Wednesday, the 23rd of Rejeb. Our troops spent the 
night where they were, acting as advanced guard. On 
Thursday morning the Sultan rode on and took up his 
position at en-Natrun, summoning the army to come to 
him there. Towards the close of the day, which was 
Thursday, the 24th of Rejeb, we advanced to that place 
and spent the night encamped there. The following day 
he set out to visit his brother, el-Melek el-'Adel, who v/as 
still ill ; then he repaired to Jerusalem, and celebrated 
Friday prayer in that city. He also inspected the various 
works in hand there, and gave instructions as to the way 
in which they were to be carried out. After that he took 
his departure from the city and returned to the camp at 
en-Natrun, where he spent the night. 


(new) forces arrive. 

The first of the chiefs to arrive was 'Ala ed-Din, son of 
the Atabeg, Lord of Mosul, who joined us about noon on 
Saturday, the 26th of Rejeb. The Sultan rode out a con- 
siderable way to meet him, welcomed him with every mark 
of honour, and brought him back to his own tent, where he 
had made splendid preparations for his reception. After 
the prince had received a handsome present, he withdrew 
to his tent. That same day the king (of England's) 


ambassador, accompanied by Abu Bekr, the chamberlain, 
set out on his return to Jaffa, bearing a letter with which 
el-Melek el-'Adel had entrusted him for the king. Very 
soon afterwards Abu Bekr returned, and presented himself 
before the Sultan, saying : * The king would not suffer me 
to enter Jaffa, but came out of the city to see me, and 
these are the words he used : " How long am I to go on 
making advances to the Sultan that he will not accept ? I 
was anxious above all things to be able to return to my 
own country, but now the winter is here, and the rain 
has begun. I have therefore decided to remain here, so 
that question no longer remains to be decided between 
us." ' On Thursday, the 9th of Sh'aban, the Egyptian 
troops came in, and the Sultan set out from en-Natrun to 
meet them ; they followed (his son), el-Melek el-Moweiyed 
Mas'ud. With them were Mejed ed-Din Helderi, Seif 
ed-Din Yazkoj, and all the Asadiyeh (those who had been 
Asad ed-Din Shirkiih's memluks). They arrived in 
splendid array, the flags and banners flying ; it was a day 
of rejoicing. The Sultan received them, in the first place, 
in his own tent, and spread a banquet before them, after 
which he sent them to the positions appointed for them. 



This prince had taken possession of the cities that had 
been promised to him, and on Saturday, the nth of 
Sh'aban, he came to Mar Samwil, where el-Melek el-'Adel 
was at the time, and dismounted to visit him. The same 
day el-'Adel wrote to the Sultan, informing him of the 


arrival of his kinsman, and begging him to be lenient to 
the youth, and to give him an honourable reception. El- 
Melek ez-Zaher, on his side, as soon as he heard of el- 
Melek el-Mansur's arrival, obtained permission to go out 
and meet him, and to visit el-'Adel to make inquiries con- 
cerning his h&alth. He found el-Mansur encamped at 
Beit Nuba ; he dismounted in front of his tent, expressing 
the greatest joy at their meeting. This occurred on the 
Sunday. He made him come with him, and, attended by 
light troops, they came to the Sultan's tent, where I was 
on duty at the time. When the Sultan saw el-Mansur, he 
advanced to meet him and folded him in his arms. Tears 
came into his eyes, and all who were present wept in 
sympathy. He then put the young prince completely at 
his ease by addressing him in the most kindly tones, 
asking him how he had fared on his journey. After this 
he gave him permission to withdraw, and sent him to 
spend the night in the tent of his own son, el-Melek ez- 
Zaher. The next morning, Monday (el-Mansur) returned 
to his troops, who received him with colours flying. The 
fine appearance of these men gave the Sultan the greatest 
pleasure, and that same day — Monday, the 13th of 
Sh'aban — he assigned them a position near to Ramla, close 
to the vanguard of our army. 



When the troops had all come in, the Sultan called his 
emirs together and addressed them as follows : * The King 
of England is very ill, and it is certain that the French 
will embark very shortly and return to their own country. 


Now that they have exhausted all their resources, the 
enemy are weighed down by the mighty hand of God. I 
am therefore of opinion that we ought to march against 
Jaffa and take that city by surprise, if we can get a favour- 
able opportunity ; if not, we will march by night and fall 
upon Ascalon ; and then, if our courage does not fail us, 
we will carry our purpose through.' The plan was ap- 
proved by the council. He therefore gave an order to 'Izz 
ed-Din Jordik, and Jemal ed-Din Farej, and several other 
emirs, to march upon Jaffa during the night of Thursday, 
the 1 6th of Sh'aban. There they were to take up their 
position as though they were acting as an advanced guard, 
and to send out spies to ascertain the effective force of the 
garrison in infantry and cavalry. Meanwhile the king 
constantly sent messengers to the Sultan for fruit and 
snow, for all the while he was ill he had a great longing 
for pears and peaches. The Sultan always sent him some, 
hoping by means of these frequent messages to obtain the 
information of which he stood in need. In this way he 
managed to ascertain that there were three hundred 
knights in the city, according to the highest computation, 
or two hundred reckoning them at the lowest numbers re- 
ported ; he also learnt that Count Henry was using every 
endeavour to persuade the French to remain with the 
king, but that they were one and all determined to cross 
the seas. He heard, moreover, that they were neglecting 
the walls of the city, centring all their attention on getting 
the fortifications of the citadel into good order, and the 
king of England had expressed a wish to see Abu Bekr 
the chamberlain, with whom he had become very intimate. 
As soon as he had received trustworthy confirmation of 
this news, he marched on the Thursday morning to Ramla, 
and encamped in that place about noon the same day. 
He then received the following message from the detach- 


ment of troops sent forward to over-run the country : 
* We made an expedition against Jaffa, and they sent only 
about three hundred knights against us, the greater part of 
whom were riding on mules.' The Sultan sent them an 
order to remain where they were. Very shortly after this 
Abu Bekr the chamberlain came to the camp, bringing 
with him a messenger from the king, sent to thank the 
Sultan for his kindness in sending him fruits and snow. 
Abu Bekr related that on one occasion, when he happened 
to be alone with the king, he had said to him : ' Beg my 
brother el-Melek el-'Adel to consider what means can be 
used to induce the Sultan to make peace, and ask him to 
request that the city of Ascalon may be given to me. I 
will take my departure, leaving him here, and with a very 
small force he will get the remainder of their territory out 
of the hands of the Franks. My only object is to retain 
the position I hold amongst the Franks. If the Sultan 
will not forego his pretensions to Ascalon, then let (el- 
'Adel) procure me an indemnity for the sums I have laid 
out in repairing its fortifications.' When the Sultan re- 
ceived this message, he sent the chamberlain and the 
messenger to el-Melek el-'Adel, and he privately instructed 
a confidential servant to go to el-'Adel and tell him : ' If 
they will give up Ascalon, conclude the treaty of peace, for 
our troops are worn out by the length of the campaign, 
and have spent all their resources.' It was on Friday, the 
17th of Sh'aban, that they departed. 



After sunset on the evening of Friday, the 17th of 
Sh'aban, a letter came from Bedr ed-Din Dolderim, who 


was then with the advanced guard, saying : ' Five men — 
one of whom, called Huat,^ is of high rank in the king's 
service — have come to us from the city, and have expressed 
a desire for an interview with us. Shall we hear what they 
have to say, or not ?' The Sultan sent them permission, 
and at the hour of the last night prayer Bedr ed-Din him- 
self came to the camp to inform us that the king agreed to 
give up Ascalon, that he surrendered his claim to compensa- 
tion on that score, and that he had a most hearty desire 
for peace. The Sultan ordered this message to be repeated 
to him, and then sent a plenipotentiary to the king to take 
his hand on this matter. He was to say : * Now that the 
Sultan has collected all his forces together, I cannot take 
back any message to him, until I have obtained an assurance 
from you that you will keep your word.' Bedr ed-Din 
took his leave after receiving these instructions, and wrote 
an account of what was going forward to el-Melek el-'Adel. 
On Saturday, the i8th of Sh'aban, we received the follow- 
ing dispatch from Bedr ed-Din : * I have received the king's 
promise {literally^ hand) through the plenipotentiary ; the 
boundaries of our respective territories are to be those 
established in the former agreement with el-Melek el-'Adel.' 
The Sultan's ministers {literally^ diwan), when summoned 
to a council, decided that the city of Jaffa and its depen- 
dencies should be made over to the king, with the excep- 
tion of Ramla, Lydda, Yebna, and Mejdel Yaba; Csesarea 
also, with its dependencies, was to be his, as well as Arsuf, 
Haifa, and Acre and their dependencies, with the exception 
of Nazareth and Seffurieh. This decision was recorded in 
writing. The Sultan sent a letter in answer to Bedr ed- 
Din's dispatch, and Torontai set out to carry it to the 
emir in company with the king's ambassador. That envoy 

^ Perhaps Hudt is for ' Howard.' 


arrived in the afternoon of Saturday to conclude the peace 
with Bedr ed-Din, and he said to the ambassador : * These 
are the boundaries fixed to your territory. If you accept 
peace on the terms, well and good. I will give you my 
hand upon our promises. Let the king send a man (to 
the Sultan) empowered to swear (in his name), and let 
this be done the day after to-morrow. Otherwise, we shall 
believe you are only temporizing to gain time, and we 
shall break off all negotiations.' After they had come to 
an agreement as to the terms, they set out together on the 
Sunday morning. The hour of the last prayer on that 
Sunday, the i8th of Sh'aban, had gone by, when they came 
to the Sultan to announce that Torontai and the king's 
ambassador had returned. Only Torontai received per- 
mission to come into the Sultan's presence. He stated 
that, when the king was informed of the tenor of the 
written resolution of the council, he called out that he had 
never given up the compensation (he claimed), whereupon 
the men who had been sent to Dolderim declared to the 
king that he had given it up without a doubt. ' If I did,' 
the king had said, ' I will not break my word. Tell the 
Sultan from me that it is well ; that I accept the treaty, 
but trust myself to his generosity, and know that, if he 
does anything further in my favour, it is to his kindness 
I shall owe the boon.' Torontai went that night to bring 
the king's ambassadors, who waited until the Monday 
morning before they were admitted to the Sultan's presence. 
They then stated what had been agreed upon by their 
prince, after which they withdrew to their own tents. The 
Sultan held a council at which a final decision was taken 
and the preliminaries of the arrangement settled. Emir 
Bedr ed-Din Dolderim then set out for el-Melek eU'Adel's 
tent, taking the king's ambassadors with him, with the 
intention of asking that Ramla might be granted in addi- 


tion. He returned after the last evening prayer on Monday, 
and a convention was then drawn up, by the terms of which 
peace was to be made for three years, commencing from 
the date of the document, that is to say, from Wednesday 
the 22nd of Sh'aban, 588 (September 2, 1192), and Ramla 
and Lydda were to be made over to the Franks. El-'Adel 
was then dispatched with the following instructions : ' If 
you can induce (the king) to be contented with only one 
of those cities, or to agree to share them equally (with us), 
do so, and do not enter upon the question of the posses- 
sion of the hill-country.' The Sultan thought it desirable 
to make peace, because his troops had suffered a great 
deal, and all their funds were exhausted ; he knew also 
that they were very anxious to return to their homes, and 
did not forget the unwillingness they had shown before 
Jaffa, when he had ordered them to advance to the attack, 
and they had refused to move. Reflecting, therefore, that 
if he came to need them, he might find they had gone off, 
he felt obliged to give them sufficient time to rest, and to 
forget the state to which they were now reduced. He was 
also anxious to set about the re-organizing of the country, 
and to furnish the Holy City with all the war-stores he 
could command, and to obtain time to put her defences in 
good order. One of the clauses of the treaty provided that 
Ascalon should be demolished, and that our soldiers should 
co-operate with theirs in razing the walls ; for they were 
afraid that, if we received the city as it stood, we should 
neglect to demolish its defences. El-'Adel set out to 
negotiate on this basis, and demanded that all Moslem 
countries should be included in the treaty ; the Franks, on 
their side, obtained a promise that the Lord of Antioch 
and Tripoli should be included in the truce, besides the 
treaty of peace which we had made with him. These pre- 
liminaries arranged, the ambassadors took their departure, 


having received an intimation that they would have to 
make up their minds either for peace or for war. For we 
were afraid that these negotiations were like the former 
ones — nothing but a means employed by the king to gain 
time ; and by this time we were well acquainted with his 
methods. That same day an ambassador came from Seif 
ed-Din Bektimor, Lord of Khelat, with a message that his 
master put himself at the Sultan's disposal, offered his 
support, and promised to send him troops. An ambassador 
also came from the Georgians, with instructions relative to 
the places of pilgrimage maintained by that people in 
Jerusalem, which they were anxious to keep in good 
order. They complained that they had been dispossessed, 
and begged the Sultan to have compassion on them, and 
order that the places in question might be restored to 
those in charge of them. The Lord of Erzerum also sent 
in his submission to the Sultan, with offers of service. 



On el-'Adel's arrival (at Jaffa) they made him halt at a 
tent outside the city. The king was informed of his 
coming, and, although he was very ill, he had him brought 
before him with the others. When el-'Adel put into his 
hands the draft, he said : ' I am not strong enough to 
read it ; but I solemnly declare that I will make peace, 
and here is my hand.' The ambassadors then met 
together with Count Henry and the son of Barezan 
(Balian II. of Ibelin), and the other members of the 
council, and informed them of the provisions of the treaty. 
All the conditions were accepted, even that regarding the 


equal division of Ramla and Lydda, and it was decided 
that it should be confirmed by oath on the Wednesday 
morning. For the Franks said they were unable to swear 
to it on the spot, because they had eaten (that day), and 
it was their custom never to take an oath except fasting. 
El-'Adel sent a courier to the Sultan with the news. On 
Wednesday, the 22nd of the month Sh'aban, the members 
of the embassy were summoned into the king's presence, 
and he gave them his hand, while they, on their side, 
pledged themselves to him ; he excused himself from 
taking an oath, saying that kings never did so,^ and the 
Sultan accepted this declaration. All who were present 
then took the oath with Count Henry, son of the king's 
sister, who was to succeed him in the Sahel, and with 
Balian, son of Barezan, Lord of Tiberias. The Hospi- 
tallers, Templars, and all the leaders of the Franks gave 
in their adhesion. In the evening of that same day the 
Sultan's envoys set out to return to their master, and 
arrived in the camp about the time of the last evening 
prayer, accompanied by the son of Honferi, the son of 
Barezan, and several other chiefs. ■ The Frank envoys 
were received with great honour, and were lodged in a 
tent pitched for that purpose, and befitting their rank. 
EI-'Adel then presented himself before the Sultan, and 
informed him of all that had taken place. On the morning 
of the following day, the 23rd of Sh'aban, the king's 
ambassador was introduced to the Sultan, and, taking his 
royal hand, declared that he accepted peace on the pro- 
posed conditions. He and his colleagues then asked that 
an oath to observe the treaty should be taken by el-Melek 
el-'Adel, el Melek el-Afdal, el Melek ez-Zaher, 'Ali Ibn 
Ahmed el-Meshtub, Bedr ed-Din Dolderim, el Melek 

^ St. Louis was in like manner excused from an, oath when taken 
prisoner in Egypt. 



el-Mansur, and all the other leaders, such as Ibn el- 
Mokaddem and the Prince of Sheizer, whose dominions 
bordered on those of the Franks. The Sultan promised 
to send a commissioner with them to the last-named 
leaders to receive their oath. He also swore (peace) with 
the Lord of Antioch and Tripoli, stipulating, however, 
that his oath should be null and void unless that prince 
would give a like pledge to the Moslems, otherwise he 
should not be included in the treaty. He then ordered a 
proclamation to be made in the camp and in the market- 
places, to announce that peace was made throughout the 
land, that free passage was to be allowed to Christians 
through Moslem territory, and that the Moslems were at 
liberty to go into the dominions of the Christians. It was 
also proclaimed that the Hajj road (to Mekka) was now 
open from Syria, and he resolved himself to make the 
pilgrimage. I was present at the council when he so 
decided. After this he ordered a hundred miners to be 
sent to Ascalon to demolish the walls of the city ; he put 
them under the command of an emir of high rank, who 
received instructions " to see that the Franks were with- 
drawn. A detachment of Franks was to accompany the 
miners, and to remain on the spot until the fortifications 
had been entirely destroyed, for the Christians were 
afraid that the Moslems would leave the place standing. 
It was a day of rejoicing; God alone knows the boundless 
joy of both peoples. It was known, however, that the 
Sultan had not made peace altogether of his own free will. 
With regard to this, he said to me in one of our con- 
ersations : * I am afraid of making peace, and I do not 
Know what may happen to me. The enemy will increase 
their forces, and then they will come out of the lands we 
are leaving in their possession, and recapture those we 
have taken from them. You will see that each one of 


them will make a fortress on some hill-top ; I cannot 
draw back, but the Moslems will be destroyed by this 
agreement.' So he spoke, and what he said afterwards 
came to pass^; but he saw that at that juncture it would 
be advantageous to make peace, for the troops had lost 
heart and w^ere abetting one another in disobedience. 
God saw that peace must be for our good, because the 
Sultan's death occurred shortly after the ratification of the 
treaty ; had he died in the midst of the struggle he had 
carried on, Islam would have been in the greatest danger. 
It was therefore by the special providence of God, and in 
accordance with his usual felicity, that the Sultan was 
enabled to conclude the peace himself. 



On the 25th of the month Sh'aban the Sultan commanded 
'Alem ed-Din Kaisar to set out for Ascalon with a body of 
miners and masons to demolish that city. It had been 
agreed that the king should send people from Jaffa to 
accompany this officer, to watch the progress of the work 
of demolition and tq see to the evacuation of the place 
by the Franks who Were there. The following day 
they prepared to set to work immediately on their 
arrival ; but the garrison prevented them, saying that the 
king owed them arrears of pay, and that they would not 
leave the city until the money was in their hands. ' Let 
him pay us,' they said, * and we will leave the city ; 
or, if you like, pay us }^ourselves.' But an officer came, 

^ From about 12 18 A.D. onwards the Franks erected several new 
castles. In 1229 the Emperor Frederic II. entered Jerusalem as 



bearing a commission from the king to force them to 
evacuate the place. It was the 27th of Sh'aban when the 
work was begun, and it was carried on without any inter- 
ruption. He (the king) had written to his people to take 
their share in the work of demolition, and the razing of a 
certain portion of the walls was assigned to each side. 
'When you have demolished it,' the order ran, 'you will 
have leave to depart.' On the 29th of the month the 
Sultan set out for en-Natrun, and the two arniies mingled 
one with another. A company of Moslems repaired to 
Jaffa to buy goods in that city, and a number of Franks 
{literally of the enemy) went up to Jerusalem to perform 
the pilgrimage. The Sultan opened the way for them 
{literally the door) ; he even sent guards with them to 
protect them on their way, and to accompany them on 
their return to Jaffa. These pilgrimages became very fre- 
quent, and were promoted by the Sultan, because he knew 
that the Franks would make haste to depart home as soon 
as they had visited the holy places, whereby the Moslems 
would be delivered from their presence, which was always 
a source of danger. The king (of England) was much 
vexed to see so great a number of pilgrims ; he sent to ask 
the Sultan to put what hindrance he could in their way, 
only allowing those to pass who presented some symbol to 
be agreed upon or a passport issued in his name.^ The 
Franks were very indignant at this, and it only made them 
the more eager to perform the pilgrimage. Day after day 
crowds of people came in — chiefs, people of lower rank, 
and princes in disguise. The Sultan then began to give 
honourable entertainment to such of the pilgrims as he 

I Richard sent to Salah ed-Din, asking him not to allow any pilgrim 
to go to Jerusalem without a passport from himself, and he took care 
not to give a passport to any Frenchmen, to punish them for having 
refused to assist him at Jaffa. — Geoffrey de Vinsauf 


chose ; he received them at table, and entered into familiar 
conversation with them, taking care to let them know that 
he should thereby incur the reproaches of the king. He 
used then to give them permission to continue their 
pilgrimage, declaring he took no notice of the prohibition 
he had received. He sent the following rnessage to the 
king to excuse himself on this score : ' There are men here 
who have come from afar to visit the holy places, and our 
law forbids us to hinder them.' Very soon after this the 
king's illness became so serious that a report was circulated 
of his death. He nevertheless set out for Acre on the 
night preceding the 29th of the month, accompanied by 
Count Henry and all the rest of the enemy, leaving only 
the sick and old in Jaffa. 



As soon as this business was settled and the treaty con- 
cluded, the Sultan gave his troops permission to depart. 
The first of the contingents to set out was that from 
Arbela ; they started on their march on the ist of the 
month of Ramadan. The following day saw the departure 
of the contingent furnished by the cities of Mosul, Sinjar, 
and Hisn Keifa. The Sultan had announced his pilgrim- 
age (to Mekka), and he now turned all his thoughts to 
carrying out what he had undertaken. It was I who had 
suggested the idea to him the day that peace was con- 
cluded. My words made a deep impression on him ; he 
issued an order that everyone in the army who decided to 
undertake the pilgrimage was to have his name put down, 
being anxious to ascertain by that means the number of 
people likely to accompany us. Lists were drawn up of 


everything that would be required for the journey — to wit, 
utensils, clothing, provisions, and other things. These 
documents were sent into the country in order that every- 
thing that was necessary might be prepared. After the 
Sultan had dismis'sed his troops, and had heard that the 
enemy had set out preparatory to their return home, he 
determined to repair to Jerusalem to make every arrange- 
ment for the work of its restoration, and to examine its 
condition, as well as to make preparations for his pilgrim- 
age. He set out from en-Natrun on Sunday, the 4th of 
Ramadan, and went first to Mar Samwil to visit el-Melek 
el-'Adel. But that prince was no longer there ; he had 
just returned to Jerusalem, and I was with him, having 
been sent with a message from the Sultan, together with 
Bedr ed-Din Dolderim and el-'Adel. For some time el- 
Melek el-'Adel had been obliged to live apart from his 
brother on account of his illness, but he was now quite 
convalescent. When we informed the prince that the 
Sultan was (going) to Mar Samuil to visit him, he made a 
great effort of will, and came with us to meet the Sultan, 
whom we met just as we reached Mar Samwil, and before 
he had dismounted. El-'Adel went forward to him, got 
down from his horse, kissed the ground, and then re- 
mounted. The Sultan told him to come near, and asked 
him about his health. They then rode together lo 
Jerusalem, where they arrived towards the end of the same 



On Friday, the 23rd of the month Ramadan, el Melek 
el-'Adel received the Sultan's permission to go to el-Kerak 
after having assisted at the public prayer that day. He 


was to inspect that fortress, and then make the best of 
his way to the country to the east (of the Euphrates), 
where he was to take upon him the government which had 
been entrusted to him by the Sultan. He had just bidden 
his brother farewell, and was encamped at el-'Azeriya, when 
he was informed that an ambassador from Baghdad had 
come to see him. He therefore sent a courier to the 
Sultan to inform him of this, saying he was going to receive 
the ambassador with a view of ascertaining the object of 
his mission. On Saturday, the 24th, he came to visit the 
Sultan, and told him that the ambassador came from 
Ibn en-Nafedh, who had been made assistant of the Vizier 
of Baghdad. He came to deliver a letter from his master 
to el-'Adel, begging him to use his influence with the 
Sultan and persuade him to show respect to the Khalif, 
and urging him to act as mediator between the Sultan 
and the KhaliPs Divan. The same messenger brought a 
reprimand to the Sultan for having delayed to send envoys 
to the threshold of the Khalifate, and was instructed to 
require him to send el-Kadi el-Fadel to the Khalif's Divan, 
to conclude certain negotiations of the Sultan with the 
Divan which hitherto had led to nothing. (On this 
occasion) the Divan made the most splendid promises 
to el-Melek el-'Adel, that in case he should be successful 
the service he would thereby render to the Divan would 
thenceforward give him the greatest influence, with other 
considerations of a like nature. When el-'Adel spoke to 
the Sultan on the subject, he showed no disposition to 
send an ambassador to receive the orders of the Divan, or 
to suffer it to appear that the Khalifs interference had any 
influence with him at all. The discussion was interrupted 
and resumed more than once ; they had several conversa- 
tions, more or less lengthy, on the subject, until at last 
the Sultan decided to dispatch ed-Dia esh-Sheherzuri 


(to Baghdad).! As soon as el-'Adel had arranged this 
business, he returned to his camp at el-'Azariya, and made 
known the Sultan's answer, — that he had consented to send 
an ambassador to the Khalif's Divan. On the (following) 
Monday he set out for el Kerak, and on Tuesday, the 
26th of Ramadan, ed-Dia started for Baghdad. 



On the morning of the 27th, el-Melek ez-Zaher — may his 
glory increase ! — set out, after going to the Sakhra to say 
his prayers and implore the favour of God. He rode out 
and I rode in attendance, when he turned to me, saying : 
' I have just recollected something I must speak to the 
Sultan about.' He sent forthwith to ask permission to 
come into his father's presence, and as soon as the per- 
mission was granted took me with him into the audience- 
chamber. Everyone else withdrew, after which the Sultan 
addressed him as follows : ' I commend you to God 
Almighty. He is the source of all good. Do the will of 
God, for that is the way of peace. Beware of bloodshed ; 
trust not in that, for spilt blood never sleeps. Seek to 
gain the hearts of thy subjects, and watch over all their 
interests, for thou art only appointed by God and by me 
to look after their good ; endeavour to gain the hearts of 
thy emirs, thy ministers, and thy nobles. I have become 
great as I am because I have won the hearts of men by 
gentleness and kindness. Never nourish ill-feeling against 
any man, for death spares none. Be prudent in thy 

^ Dia ed-Din esh-Sheherzuri (El-Kasem Ibn Yahya) was appointed 
Kadi of Damascus about the year 572 (a.d. i i 76-1 177). 


dealings with other men, for (God) will not pardon unless 
they forgive you ; but as to that which is between God 
and thyself. He will pardon the penitent, for He is gracious.' 
He added other injunctions, but this is all I could re- 
menaber after we had left the Sultan's presence, for a great 
part of the night had gone and dawn had begun to appear 
before we left the audience-chamber. He finally gave us 
leave to withdraw, and rose from his seat to bid the prince 
farewell ; he dismissed him with a kiss on the cheek, and, 
placing his hand on his son's head, committed him to the 
care of God. The prince went to sleep in the wooden 
alcove belonging to the Sultan, and we remained with him 
until daybreak. Ez-Zaher then started on his journey, 
and I rode with him some way before bidding him 
farewell; he then continued on his road under God's 
protection. Very shortly afterwards el-Melek el-Afdal 
dispatched his baggage, but the business he was trans- 
acting with the Sultan through me detained him till the 
4th of the month of Shawal. He set out on his journey 
that evening, towards the middle of the night, after having 
suffered a reprimand from the Sultan. Instead of follow- 
ing the road through the valley of the Jordan, he started 
across country with a lightly-armed escort. 



The Sultan was occupied during his stay in Jerusalem in 
granting fiefs, in dismissing his troops, and making pre- 
parations for his journey into Egypt. His intention as to 
the pilgrimage was interrupted, so the most important of 
profitable things was lost to him. He spent his time in 
this way until he heard for certain that the ship had sailed 


on which the king of England had embarked, on his 
return to his own country ; this was on the first day of the 
month of Shawal (October lo, 1192), He then determined 
to ride through the districts on the coast with a small 
escort, with a view of inspecting the maritime fortresses, 
and reaching Damascus by way of Banias. He proposed 
to remain only a few days in that city, returning thence to 
Jerusalem, preparatory to starting for Egypt. He meant 
to examine into the condition of that country, to make the 
necessary arrangements for its government, and to take 
various measures of public utility. According to his com- 
mand I v/as to remain in the Holy City until his return, to 
superintend the erection of a hospital he had ordered to be 
built, and to press forward the completion of a college, the 
foundations of which he had laid. He left Jerusalem on 
Thursday, the 6th of Shawal, and I rode with him to bid 
him farewell, which I meant to do first at el-Bira,^ where 
he halted for dinner ; he continued his journey to Nablus, 
and I went part of the way with him. He halted for the 
night, and then started for that city, where he arrived about 
mid- day on Friday, the 7th of Shawal A crowd of people 
came out to meet him, to complain of el-Meshtub and the 
oppressive way in which he governed them. He resolved 
to inquire into the matter, and therefore remained at 
Nablus until the afternoon of Saturday, when he set out for 
Sebastieh,2 to examine into the state of that city. He 
then took the road to Kaukab, where he arrived on Mon- 
day, the 10th of the month. He made an inspection of 
the fortress, and ordered the necessary repairs. Beha ed- 
Din Karakush, who had recovered his freedom, came to 
pay his respects to the Sultan on Tuesday, the nth o{ 
Shawal. His coming gave the Sultan the greatest pleasure, 

1 BireJi^ 8i miles N. of Jerusalem. 

2 S invir;:«. 


and, indeed, he had many titles to his prince's favour, and 
had rendered great service to the cause of Islam. He 
obtained his sanction to go to Damascus to procure the 
money necessary for his ransom, which was fixed, as I have 
been told, but God knows, at two hundred thousand (gold 
pieces ?). When the Sultan was at Beirut, he received a 
visit from the prince, Lord of Antioch, who came to 
salute him and to ask a favour. He gave him an honour- 
able reception, and entertained him hospitably, grant- 
ing him the territory of el-'Amk^ — corn lands, the crop 
bringing in an annual return of fifteen thousand gold 
pieces (dinars) annually. El-Meshtub had been left at 
Jerusalem with the other emirs who had remained there, 
but the government of the city had not been entrusted to 
him ; 'Izz ed-Din Jurdik exercised authority as governor, 
having been appointed by the Sultan on that Prince's 
return to the city after the conclusion of peace. Before 
appointing him to that post, the Sultan had employed me 
to ascertain the opinion of el-Melek el-'Adel, el-Melek el- 
Afdal, and el-Melek ez-Zaher upon the subject. Jurdik 
was, moreover, elected as governor by the voice of all 
religious and just men, because he was dependable in 
character, and protected all honest men. One Friday, at 
the Sakhra, in accordance with the Sultan's commands, I 
installed Jurdik in his office. After the conclusion of 
public prayer I invested that emir with his new dignity, 
urging him very specially to do his duty faithfully, and 
acquainting him with the high esteem in which he was held 
by the Sultan. He acquitted himself of the duties of his 
position in the most praiseworthy manner. El-Meshtub 
remained in the city in company with the other emirs, and 
died there on Sunday, the 23rd of Shawal (November I, 

^ See p. 38. 


A.D. 1 192). Prayers were said over his body in the 
Mesjed el-Aksa,^ and he was buried in his own house. 



The Sultan inspected all the strongholds he possessed in 
the Sahel (Western Palestine), and ordered the necessary 
repairs to be carried out ; he then turned his attention to 
the condition of the troops composing their garrisons, and 
filled each one of the fortresses with infantry and cavalry. 
On the morning of Wednesday, the 26th of Shawal, he 
entered Damascus, and there he found el-Melek el-Afdal, 
el-Melek ez-Zaher, el-Melek ez-Zafer, and his younger 
children. He preferred this city as a place of abode to 
any other. On the Thursday morning, the 27th of the 
month, he held a public reception, to which everyone was 
allowed to come and satisfy their thirst to see him. People 
of all classes were admitted, and poets recited poems in his 
praise: 'that he spread the wings of Justice over all, and 
rained down boons on his people from the clouds of his 
munificence and kindness.' For he held audiences at ap- 
pointed times at which he gave ear to the complaints of 
the oppressed. On Monday, the first day of the month 
of Zu el-K'ada, el-Melek el-Afdal gave a great dinner 
to el-Melek ez-Zaher, who had come to Damascus on 
hearing that the Sultan intended to stay in that city. He 
had stayed there in the hope of having the pleasure of 
seeing his father once more ; it seemed as though his noble 
heart had a presentiment that his father's death was at 
hand. In the course of the evening he returned several 
times to bid him farewell. In the banquet that el-Afdal 

» The Haram enclosure. 


gave his brother, he displayed a magnificence and good 
taste worthy of his fine character. He intended it as a 
token of gratitude for the splendid reception ez-Zaher had 
given him on his visit to Aleppo. The great officers of 
State, both civil and ecclesiastical (literally, the lords of 
this world and the sons of that which is hereafter), were 
present at this assembly. The Sultan also went, at el- 
Afdal's invitation, to gladden his heart. So at least I have 
been told. 



El-Melek el-'Adel had been to inspect the fortress of 
el-Kerak and to give orders for the improvements he con- 
sidered necessary, after which he set out on his return to 
his dominions on the Euphrates, and on Wednesday, the 
17th of the month of Zu el-K'ada, he entered the territory 
of Damascus. The Sultan went out to meet him, and 
remained hunting in the districts between Ghabaghevb^ and 
el-Kisweh till he came, and they set out together for 
Damascus, and entered the city on the evening of Sunday, 
the 2 1 St of the month. The Sultan stayed at Damascus,, 
hunting in company with his brother and sons, amusing 
himself in the country of Damascus and in the haunts of 
the gazelle. It seemed to afford him the rest of mind that 
his continual fatigues — working by day awd watching by 
night — had rendered absolutely necessary for him ; but he 
did not think that he was then bidding farewell to his 
children and the scenes of his pleasures in the chase. The 
pressure of business and the number of projects in hand 
prevented him from thinking of revisiting Egypt. I was 
still in Jerusalem when I received a letter summoning me. 

^ This place is about 19 miles S. of Damascus." 


to rejoin him. Rain was falling in torrents, and the roads 

were so deep in mud that I was nineteen days in accomplish- 
ing the journey. I set out from Jerusalem on Friday, the 
23rd of Moharrem, 589, and did not reach Damascus till 
Tuesday, the 12th of Safer, just as the first pilgrims were 
nearing the city, which the Sultan had reached in the after- 
noon of Monday, the nth of Safer, so my appearance was 
delayed. In the northern ante-chamber the emirs and 
high functionaries were thronging round el-Melek el-Afdal, 
awaiting audience of the Sultan. But when he heard I 
was there, he ordered that I should be admitted before all 
the others to a private interview with him, and he rose 
from his seat to greet me. Never before had his face 
expressed such satisfaction at the sight of me ; his eyes 
filled with tears, and he folded me in his arms. May God 
have mercy upon him ! 



On Wednesday, the 13th of the month of Safer, he sent to 
summon me, and when I w^ent to him, asked me who was 
in the antechamber. I replied that el-Melek el-Afdal was 
sitting there, waiting to be permitted to pay him his 
respects, together with a crowd of emirs and people, who 
had come for the same purpose ; but he sent Jemal ed-Din 
Ikbal to inform them that he could not receive them. The 
next morning he sent for me again early, and I found him 
sitting in a summer-house (Soffa) in the garden, surrounded 
by his younger children. He asked if there were anyone 
waiting for him, and when he heard that some envoys had 
come from the Franks, and were waiting to be admitted, 
together with his emirs and chief officers, he commanded 


that the ambassadors should be introduced into his presence. 
One of his young children, Emir Abu Bekr, of whom he 
was very fond, and with whom he was playing, happened 
to be there. As soon as he saw these men, with their 
shaven chins, their close-cropped hair and strange garments, 
he was frightened and began to cry. The Sultan made 
his- excuses to the ambassadors, and dismissed them with- 
out hearing the message they had brought He then said 
to me, speaking in his usual kindly way : ' It is a busy day.' 
Then he added : ' Bring us whatever you have ready.' They 
brought him rice cooked in milk and other light refresh- 
ments, and he ate of them, but without much appetite as 
it seemed to me. He had latterly omitted holding his 
receptions, and excused himself, saying it was a great 
trouble to him to move ; indeed, he was suffering from 
indigestion, lassitude, and weakness.^ When we had 
finished our meal, he asked me if I had heard anything 
of the Haj. I made answer : ' I met some of the travellers 
on the road ; if there were not so much mud they would 
have been here to-day ; but they will come in to-morrow.' 
He then said : ' We will go out, please God, to meet 
them ;' and he gave an order that their road should be 
cleared of the water, for it v/as very rainy that year and 
there were streams of water in the roads. After this I 
withdrew, noticing that he no longer had the good spirits 
I knew so well. On the Friday morning early he set out 
on horseback. I followed shortly with the pack anrmals, 
and came up just as he met the Haj. Among the pilgrims 
were Sabek ed-Din and Karala el-Yaruki, and the respect 
for these Sheikhs was very great. El-Melek el-Afdal then 
came out to join him, and took me aside to speak to me. 
At that moment I noticed that the Sultan was not wearing 

^ All symptoms of typhoid fever. 


his kazaghand} without which he never went riding. It 
"Was a magnificent sight that day, for the inhabitants of the 
city came out in crowds to meet and to look at the Sultan. 
I could not control myself any longer, and hastened up to 
him, telling him he had forgotten his kazaghand. He 
seemed like a man waking out of a dream, and asked for 
the garment, but the master of the wardrobe could not be 
found. It appeared to me very serious. I said to myself : 
* The Sultan is asking for something he never used to be 
without, and he cannot get it !' This filled my heart 
with apprehension, and I considered it as a bad omen. I 
then turned to him and asked if there were not another 
way, less crowded with people, by which he could return 
to the ziXy, He replied that there was, and turned into 
a path between the gardens, leading in the direction of 
el-Muneib'a.- We followed him, but I was heavy at heart, 
for I feared very much for his health. When we came to 
the castle, he entered by crossing the bridge as usual, but 
this was the last time he rode over it. 


THE sultan's illness. 

On the Friday evening the Sultan suffered from extreme 
lassitude, and a little before midnight he had an attack of 
bilious fever, which was internal rather than external. On 
Saturday morning, the i6th of Safer, 589 (21st of February, 
A.D. 1 193), he was in a very low state in consequence of 
the fever, although it was suppressed. I went to visit him 

» See above, p. 367. 

2 El-Muneib'a means ' the little spring.' The place that bears this 
name lies in the Ghuta of Damascus. 


with el-Kadi el-Fadel, and we entered his room at the 
same time as el-Melek el-Afdal, his son. We had a long' 
conversation with him ; he complained at first of the bad 
night he had had, but after that he seemed to take pleasure 
m talking to us. This lasted till noon, when we withdrew, 
leaving our hearts with him. He told us to go and par- 
take, of the meal in attendance on el-Melek el-Afdal. El- 
Kadi el-Fadel was not accustomed to that, and he there- 
fore returned (home) ; I, for my part, went into the great 
southern hall, and found the table laid, and el-Afdal seated 
in his father's place. As I could not endure this sight, I 
withdrew without sitting down to table ; and several 
others, seeing his son seated in his place, held it as an 
omen of ill, and shed tears at the sight. From that time 
the Sultan's illness grew more and more serious, and we 
never omitted visiting him both morning and evening. 
El-Kadi el-Fadel and I used to go into the sick-room 
several times a day, whenever a lull in the pain he 
suffered allowed him to receive our visits. It was in his 
head that he suffered most. One of the things from which 
we augured that his life would be taken was the absence of 
his chief physician, who knew his constitution better than 
anyone, having always attended him, both in the city and 
on his journeys. On the fourth day of his illness the other 
physicians thought it necessary to bleed him, and from 
that moment he grew seriously worse, and the humours of 
the body began to cease their flow. His condition was 
aggravated by the predominance of this dryness, and he 
was reduced to the last degree of weakness. On the sixth 
day we got him to sit up, propping him up at the back 
with a pillow ; we then brought him a cup of lukewarm 
water to drink, which was to act as an emollient after the 
medicine he had taken. He tasted it and found it too 
hot ; another cup was brought him which he thought too 


cold, but still he did not get vexed or angry, but only 
'said : ' O God, perhaps there is no one who can make the 
water of the right temperature !' El-Fadel and I left him 
with the tears streaming from our eyes, and he said to me : 
* What a great soul the Moslems will lose ! By God, any 
other man in his place would have thrown the cup at the 
head of the man who brought it !' During the sixth, 
seventh, and eighth days the illness increased, and then his 
mind began to wander. On the ninth day he fell into a 
stupor, and was unable to take the draught that was 
brought to him. The whole city was in commotion, and 
the merchants, being afraid, began to carry away their 
goods out of the bazaars ; it is impossible to give any idea 
of the sorrow and trouble with which one and all were 
oppressed. Every evening el-Kadi el-Fadel and I used to 
sit up for the first third of the night together, and then we 
would go to the gate of the palace ; and if we found means, 
we took a look at him and withdrew at once, and if not, 
we still learned how he was. When we came out we used 
to find the people waiting to gather from the expression of 
our faces what was the Sultan's state. On the tenth day of 
his illness they treated him twice with a clyster, which gave 
him some relief. After that it gave the greatest delight to 
all to hear that he had drunk some barley-water. That 
night, as usual, we waited some hours, and then we went 
to the palace, where we found Jemal ed-Daula Ikbal. On 
our asking as to the health (of the Sultan), he went in and 
sent us word from el-Melek el-Mo'azzem Turan Shah — 
God increase his power! — that perspiration was visible in 
both legs. We gave thanks to God for this news, and 
begged him to feel the rest of the body, and to let us know 
of any perspiration elsewhere. He did as we asked him 
and came back to us, saying the perspiration was profuse. 
We then departed with lightened hearts. On the follow- 


ing day, which was Tuesday, the eleventh day of the 
illness and the 26th of the month of Safer, we went to the 
gate to ask for news. They told us that the perspiration 
was so profuse that it had gone right through the mattress 
and the mats, and the moisture could be seen on the floor ; 
and as the dryness of the body had increased to such a 
degree, the doctors were astonished at his strength. 



When el-Melek el-Afdal saw his father's condition, and 
all men realized that there was no hope of his recovery, 
he made all haste to secure the oaths of allegiance of the 
people. He held a reception for that purpose in the 
Redvvan palace, so called because Redwan (one of the 
former princes of Aleppo) had resided there. He then 
summoned the Kadis and instructed them to draft a brief 
form of oath, promising fidelity to the Sultan as long as he 
lived, and after his death to el-Afdal. The prince excused 
himself to the people on the ground that the Sultan's ill- 
ness was most critical, ^nd that one could not tell what 
might happen, and that it was necessary to provide for 
any event after the manner of princes. The first he called 
upon to swear was S'ad ed-Din Mas'ud, brother of Bedr 
ed-Din Maudud and ShiJma (or governor of Damascus) ; 
he took the oath without any hesitation and quite uncon- 
ditionally. Nasr ed-Din, governor of Sahyun (near 
Laodicea), then came forward and took the oath, but 
made it a condition that the fortress he commanded should 
be his. Sabek ed-Din, Lord of Sheizer, also swore, but 
not by the (triple) divorce ; ' for,' said he, ' I have never 

26 — 2 


taken an oath that contained such a condition.' Khosh- 
terin Kosein (emir of the) Hakkari (Kurds) swore next ; 
then came Nusherawan ez-Zerzari (another Kurdish emir), 
who, however, made it a condition that he should be 
granted a suitable fief. 'Alkan and Milkan (two other 
Kurdish emirs) also took the required oath. A banquet 
was then served of which the whole assembly partook, and 
after the 'asr (prayer) the ceremony of the taking of the 
oath was resumed. Maimun el-Kasri — God be merciful to 
him ! — and Shems ed-Din (Sonkor) the elder swore, but 
conditionally ; thej^ exacted a promise that they should 
never be called upon to draw sword against any of el- 
Afdal's brothers : * In any other case,' said Maimun, * I 
will answer with my head.' Sonkor began by refusing to 
take the oath ; afterwards he said : ' I will swear allegiance 
to you in my capacity as governor of en-Natrun, and on the 
condition that that place shall remain mine.' Then Sama 
came forward and said : ' Why should I swear ? I have 
no fief.' They then talked to him awhile, and he swore 
as the others had done, but on condition of receiving an 
adequate fief. Sonkor, the Scarred (el-Meshtub), swore, 
but conditionally upon his receiving the grant of a satis- 
factory fief. Aibek el-Aftas — God have mercy on him ! — 
took the oath with the proviso that he should get what he 
wanted, but he omitted the (triple) divorce clause. Hossam 
ed-Din Bishara, the superior officer of all the above emirs, 
also took the oath. None of the Egyptian emirs were 
present at this ceremony, nor, indeed, had they been re- 
quired. The others had only been required to take the 
oath with a view of maintaining order, and possibly the 
formula of their oath is not well known. The text of 
the oath was as follows: 'Clause i. From this moment 
forth, with single aim and unflinching purpose, I vow my 
allegiance to el-Melek en-Nasr (Salah ed-Din) as long as he 


lives, and I will never relax my efforts to uphold his 
government, consecrating to his service my life and wealth, 
my sword and my men ; I will obey his commands and 
conform to his will. Afterwards I will keep the same faith 
with his son, el-Afdal 'Ali, and the heirs of that prince. 
1 take God to witness that I will obey him and uphold his 
government and land, consecrating to his service my life 
and wealth, my sword and my men ; I will observe his 
commands and prohibitions, and I swear that my private 
resolutions correspond with my oath. I call upon God to 
be witness of my words. '^ 



The eve of Wednesday, the 27th of Safer, in the year 589, 
was the twelfth night of the illness. He grew worse, 
and his strength failed ; and from the first there was 
no hope. He remained sometimes with us, and some- 
times wandering; but that night they sent for me, as 
well as el-Kadi el-Fadel and Ibn ez-Zeki,"^ and it was 
not the usual time for our being present. El-Melek 
ei-Afdal wished us to spend the night with him, but the 
kadi objected, because people used to wait for us on our 
return from the castle, and he feared that if we did not 
make our appearance, an alarm might spread through the 

^ Our author omits the second clause containing the penalties 
atached, and which must have run somewhat as follows : ' If I break 
my oath, I swear that by that fact alone my wives are divorced, 
my slaves set free, and I must go, barefoot, on the pilgrimage to 
Mecca,' etc. 

2 See p. 40. 


city, and they might begin pillaging. He therefore thought 
it best for us to leave. El-Afdal then decided to summon 
Abu J'afer, Z7ndm of the Kellasa, and a man of known 
rectitude, in order that he might be at hand in the castle 
if God should call the sick man to Himself that night. 
But he lived on, half attending to him, and half wandering, 
while the confession of faith and of God Almighty was 
repeated to him. The kadi and 1 took our departure, 
both ready to have laid down our lives for his. He 
remained all night in the state of one going to God, and 
Sheikh Abu J'afer read to him passages from the Kuran, 
and reminded him of God Almighty. Since the ninth 
day of the fever the Sultan had been wandering, and his 
brain was clear only at intervals. The sheikh afterwards 
assured us thus : ' I was reciting the Divine Word to him 
— He is the God than whom there is no other God ; who 
knows the unseen and the visible (lix. 22), and I heard 
him say — God have mercy on him — " It is tj-ue /" And 
this at the time of his passing away, and it was a sign 
of God's favour to him. God be thanked for that !' The 
Sultan died after the hour of morning prayer, on Wednesday, 
the 27th of Safer, in the year 589 (March 4, 1193 A.D.). 
El-Kadi el-Fadel had hastened back to the castle before 
dawn at the time of his passing away, and I went too, 
but he was dead, and had entered into God's favour, and 
the place of His goodness and grace. I was told that 
while Sheikh Abu J'afer was reading from the Divine 
Word — There is no God but He I in Him do I trust 
(ix. 130), the sick man smiled, his face grew radiant, 
and he went in peace to his Lord. Never since Islam 
and the Moslems lost the (four) first khalifs, never, from 
that time, had the faith and the faithful suffered a blow 
such as that they received on the day of the Sultan's 
death. The castle, the city, the whole world, were thereby 


plunged into grief, of which God alone could fathom the 
intensity. I had often heard people say they would lay 
down their own lives for that of someone very dear to 
them, but I thought it was only a manner of speaking, 
from which a good deal must be deducted in reality ; but 
I swear before God, and I am sure that had we been 
asked that day, * Who will redeem the Sultan's life ?' there 
were several of us who would have replied by offering his 
own. El-Melek el-Afdal then held a reception in the 
north hall, to receive the condolences of his officers ; but 
he placed a guard at the entrance to the castle, and only 
admitted emirs of high rank, and doctors of law {literally^ 
' men of the turban'). It was, indeed, a melancholy day ; 
everyone was so entirely given up to sorrow and anxiety, 
to tears and lamentations, that they thought of nothing 
else. No poet was admitted to the audience chamber to 
recite elegies ; no preacher appeared to exhort the people. 
The Sultan's children went out into the streets to excite 
the compassion of the public, and the sorrow of the piteous 
sight almost killed all who saw them. This went on till 
the mid-day prayer ; they were meanwhile busy in washing 
the body, and putting it in its shroud. We were obliged 
to borrow money to purchase everything necessary for the 
funeral, even down to things that cost but a halfpenny, 
such as the straw to be mixed with the clay (to make 
the bricks).^ Ed-Dul'ai, the jurist, was charged with the 
task of washing the body. They asked me to superintend 
this operation, but I was not strong enough to bear it. When 
mid-day prayer was over, the bier was brought forth, covered 
with a piece of striped cloth. El-Kadi el-Fadel had provided 
this, and the garments necessary to cover the corpse, and 
he had been careful to select such as were proper and 

^ It is well-known that the tombs of people of high rank are lined 
with sun-baked bricks. 


suitable. When the crowd saw the bier, they raised cries 
of sorrow, and the air resounded with their wailings. They 
were so distracted by their grief, that instead of regular 
prayer the people could only exclaim. The Kadi Mohi 
ed-Din Ibn ez-Zeki was the first to say the regular prayer. 
The body was then brought round to the palace in the 
garden, where the Sultan had lived during his illness, and 
it was buried in the west Soffa (or summer-house). It 
was a little before the hour of the 'asr prayer when the 
Sultan was committed to the grave. May God sanctify 
his soul, and shed light upon his tomb ! During the day 
his son el - Melek ez - Zafer went out into the city to 
console the people, and to calm the minds of the inhabi- 
tants, but the people were too much taken, up with weeping 
to think of pillaging or making any disturbance. Everyone 
was heartbroken. All eyes were filled with tears, and 
there were very few who did not weep. After this everyone 
went home with death in their very souls, and no one 
appeared again (in the streets) throughout the night. We 
alone went to visit and to recite passages from the Kuran 
over the grave, and renewed our grief. El-Melek el-Afdal 
spent the whole of the day writing to his uncle (el-Melek 
el-'Adel) and his brothers, informing them of the sad event, 
and ofi"ering them his consolation. The next day he held 
a public reception to receive the condolences of the people, 
and threw open the gate of the city to the doctors of law 
and the 'u/ema. Sermons were delivered, but no poet 
recited any elegy, and shortly after mid-day the assembly 
broke up. The people went to the tomb in crowds from 
morning till night, reciting passages from the Kuran, and 
imploring God's blessing on him. El-Melek el-Afdal spent 
the remainder of the day dictating dispatches to be sent 
to his brothers and his uncle. 

' So passed those years and men, and seem, 
Both years and men, to be a dream.' 


Beha ed-Din Abu el-Mehasan Yusuf, ibn Rail, ibn 
Temim, kadi, lawyer, imam and grand kadi, with the per- 
mission of the (khalif) Commander of the Faithful, adds : 
It was my plan to gather together information regarding 
el-Melek en-Nasr (the prince strong to aid) Abu el- 
Mozaffer Yusuf, son of Ayub, and I have ended my 
collection at the day of his death — may God have mercy 
upon him ! My object has been to earn the favour of 
God, and to urge men to pray for him, and to remember 
what is good. 


Abd el Mohsen, the High Ad- 
miral, 121 

Abu Bekr, the Chamberlain, 371- 
373, 377^ 379, 380 

Abu el Fath Ghazi Abu Mansur 
el Melek ez Zaher Ghiath ed 
Din, Saladin's son, elsewhere 
called Ez Zaher, 11 

Abu el Futuh Yahya Ibn Habash 
es Suhraverdi, 10 

Abu el Heja, the Fat, 233, 347, 


Abu J'afer, imam of the Kellasa, 

Abu al Maali Mohammed Mohi 
ed Din, 40 

Achzib, 154, 307 

Acre, 25, 28, 35, 141, 147, 148 ; 
the plain of, 20, 27 ; battle in 
the plain of, 22 ; taken by the 
Saracens, 116; siege of by 
Christians, 154 sqq.j taken by 
Christians, 266, 267 ; Henry of 
Champagne, Lord of, 354 

Adiaman, ']'^ 

El Adid, 61 

El Adl en Nejeb, the Courier, 303 

Afamia (Apamea), 133 

El Afdal el Melek, Lord of 
Damascus, Saladin's son and 
successor, 163, 176, 181, 190, 
224, 347, 385, 393, 395-407 

Aferbela, 91 

El Aiadiya, 155, 160, 164, 165, 
176,213, 223,245-247,259,273, I 

Ainz et Tawil, the long man, 227 

Aibek el Aftar, 404 

Aibek el Azizi, 344 

El 'Aid, 132 

Aildekiz, King of Persia, 305 

AinaJ, 307 

'Ain el Bakar, 248 

'Ain Bassa. 154 

'Ain Jalud (Goliath's spring), 89 

'Ain el Mobaraka, 72 

Aintab, 63 

Ain Tub'aun, 90 

Aisa the jurist, 76, 100, 126, 167 

Aisa the swimmer, 205, 206 
Ajalon, II ; plain of, 14 
Ajjul, Tell, 28, 223 
Akabah of Fik, 220 
Akaf, fortress of, 51 
Akhar, 57 

Akher Aslem,.34i, 345 
Aksa, the mosque, 13, 351, 396 
'Ala ed Din Khorrem Shah, son 

of Izz ed Din, Lord of Mosul, 

181, 224, 232, 376 
Alamut in Irak, 74 
Alem ed Din Kaisar, 367 
Aleppo, 25, 42, 53, 38, 61, 65, et 

Alexandria, 10, 66, 67, 75, TJ^ etc. 
Alexandroschene, 153 
Ah Ibn Ahmed el Meshtub, 385 
Altonba el Adli, 341 
Amalric or Amaury, King of 

Jerusalem, 49, 51, 57 : Guy de 

Lusignan's brother. Constable 

of Jerusalem, 1 13 
Amida, Diarbekir, 19, 85 
el 'Amk, plain of Antioch, 38, 




Anastasis, church of the, at Jeru- 
salem, 239, 328, 335, 338, 555, 

Ani, Catholicos of, 189 

Antaradus, 125, 127 

Antarsus, 125, 127, 143 

Antioch, 143, 383 ; plain of, 38, 
395 ; lake cf, 78 : lord of, 395 

Apimea, 133, 190; Zeugma, 72 

Aphek, 165, 167 

Aram Naharaim, 83 

Ararat, Mount, 69 

Araxes, river, 83 

Arbalists, 57, 128, 206, 215, etc. 

Arbela, 51, 52, 80, 98; Lord of, 
51, 73, 94, 171, 182, 218 

Arjish in Armenia, on the north 
shore of Lake Van, 16 

'Arka, north of Tripoli, 62 

Armenia, Lesser, 78 

Arnar, Prince (Renaud de Chatil- 
lon), 75, 113, 115 

Arses (Arjish), 16 

Arslan Bogha, 163 

Arsuf, 286, 289, 290, 293-295, 381 

Asad ed Din (Skirkoh), 4, 5, 47- 
56, 89, 163, 348, 377 ; junior, 
237, 265 

Ascalon, 25, 26, 140, 143, 295- 
300, 326, 339, 356, 383 ; taken 
by Saiadin, 117 ; dismantled, 

Ashem, Emir, 343 
Ashtaroth Carna'in, t8 
'Ashtera, 58, 109, no 
Assassination ot Conrad of Mont- 

ferrat, 332 
Assassins, the, 74, 113, 333 
Aswan (Assouan), 66 
Atabeg, 105 
Atfih, 49 
Atropatene, 83 
'Auja, river, 293, 294, 374 
Aurelian, 38 

Ayub, Saladin's father, 4 
'Ayun el Assawir, 276 
'AyCin el Bass, 224, 225, 226 
Azaz, castle, 74, 75, 86 
Azerbijan, 39, 83, 103 
el Azeriya, 347, 359, 391 

Baalbec, 4, 47, 57, 137 ; Lord of, 

Bab, or Bap, 53 

el Babein, battle of, 47, 49 

Baghche Pass, 78 

Baghdad, 83, 171 ; the Khalif of, 
329-337, 391, 392 ; the writing 
of, 199 ; despatch from, 315 

Baghras, castle, 136, 191 

Bairam, feast of, 25 

Baldwin, Archbishop of Canter- 
bury, 195 

Baldwin IV. and V. of Jerusalem, 

Balian I. of Ibelin, 21 

Balian II. of Ibelin, 384 

Bambyce (Membij), 74 

Banias, 47, 141, 142, 153, 394 

Barbarossa, the Emperor Frede- 
rick, 170, 182, 185 

Barezan, Lord of Tiberias, 385 

Barin, 71 

Barka (Cyrene), nomad Arabs of, 

Bar Krikur Ben Basil, 189 

Basil, Archbishop of Ani, 189 

Basse Poulaine ('Ain Bassa), 154 

Battering-ram, 214, 216 

Beauvais, Bishop of, 333 

Bedr ed Din Dolderim, Lord of 
Tell el Bather, 224, 265, 339, 
341, 371, 380, 381, 382, 385, 
390, 403 

Beha ed Din Abu el Mehasan 
Yusuf Ibn Raffi, Ibn Temim, 
the historian, 409 

Beha ed Din Karakush, 141, 209, 

269, 354, 394 
Behesne, 47 

Behnesa (Besne), 63, 74 
Behrani ebh Shawush, 90 
Beilan pass, 136 
Beirut, 82, 204, 250, 327, 395 ; 

taken by Saiadin, 117 
Beisan, 89, 91, 97 
Beit Jibrin, 339, 361 ; taken by 

Saracens, 117 
Beir Nuba, it, 301, 326, 341, 346, 

3^0, 378 
Bekas, taken by Saiadin, 132, 

Bektimor, Lord of Khelat, 85, 

ICO, 305, 315, 384 
Beled, ford ot the Tigris, 61 
Belfort, 141, 142. 154, 174 
Belfreys, or movable towers, 57 
el Belka, 336 



Belus, liver, 29, 155, 224, 226 
Belvoir (Kaukab el Hawa), 25 ; 

siege of, 122-124; taken by 

Saladin, [38, 139 
Berriya (La Berne), 51 
Besne, 63 
Betetioble, 1 1 

Bethany, 347. See el Azeriya 
Bethlehem, 351 
Bilbeis, 51 
Bir, 72 
Biren, 394 
Birejk, 86 
el Birka, 285 
Birkct-Ranodan, 289 
Biriha, 285 
Biza'a, 53 

Blanche Garde, 340 
Blatanis, 132 ,' 

Bohemond I. of Antioch, 71 
Hohemond II., 42 
Bosra, Lord of, 224 
Botsa, a great ship, 67 
Burj\ 9 
Burzia, 133-135 

Cassarea, 36, 281,283,381 ; taken 

by Saladin, 116 
Caimonr, 224 
Cairo, 46 
Caivdry, 355 

Calycadnus (Geuk Su), 183, 188 
Camel, battle of tne, 329 
Canterbury, Archbishop of, 236 
Capitulation of Acre, 266 
Capitulation of Jerusalem, 118 
Caravan from Egypt captured by 

Richard I., 343' 
Casale Imberii, 328 
Cat, si'='ge engine so-called, 214 
Catholicos of the Armenians, 185 
Caymon, or Caymont, 224. 276, 

Champagne, Henry, Count of, 

35, 197, 290, 353-356, 379 
Chatillon, Renaud de, 42, 75, 

Cistern, the round, 341 
Coggeshale, Raoul, 113 
Comnenos, Manuel, 42 
Conrad of Tyre, Marquis of Mont- 

ferrat, 144, 207, 212, 254, 267, 

304, 317, 328-330, 33^ ; assas- 

bmation ot, 333 

Constance, heiress of Bohemond 

II. of Antioch, 42 
Constantinople, 334 
Crac des chevaliers, 125, 126 
Cross, Holy, 270, 271, 308, 309, 

Crusaders muster at Acre, 156 
Cursed tower at Acre, 248 
Cyprus, 35,241,242, 355 
Cyrene, 107 

Damascus, 38, 47, 65, 68, etc. ; 
Kadi of, 40 ; Little Damascus, 
6 ; a man ot Damascus, 15 

Damietta, 57-59 

Daphne, 132 

Dargham, 46 

DarCin, or Darum, 328, 357, 359 ; 
taken by Saladin, 117 ; taken 
by the Franks under Richard I., 

D'auk bridge, 226, 227 
Dausaria, 53 
Deir, 60 

Deir el Belah (Darum), 117 
Deir er Raheb, 286 
Derbas el Mehrani, 367 
Derbesak, 135 
ed Dia esh Sheher-Ziari, 391 
Diarbekr, 19, 73, 79, 85, 103 
Dinar, Tynan, 7 
Dira'a, a game, 64 
Dirhem, 7 
Dolderim, Bedr ed Din el Yaruki, 

Lord of Tell el Basher, 86, 224, 

339: 341 
Doneiser, 99 
Dovin, 4 
ed Duiai, 407 

Ecdippa, 154 

Edessa, 73, 82, 99, 218, 333, 334 ; 

Jocelyn of, 185 
Egypt, 47, ct saep. 
Eleanor of Guienne, mother of 

Richard I., 355 
Eleutherus, river, 62 
Emesa, 56, 62, 104 ; siege of, 70 ; 

prince of, 103 
England, Richard I., King of, 

arrives before Acre, 248 ; takes 

a great ship, 249, 250; sends 

ambassadors to Saladin, 256; 

asks Saladin for iruit and 



snow, 263 ; massacres prisoners 
after the fall of Acre, 272, 273 ; ; 
marches upon Jerusalem, 274- 
302 ; returns to Acre, 304, 306; 
negotiates with el Melek el ; 
Adel, 311, 320, 321 ; sends an 
embassy to Saladin, 322; offers , 
his sister in marriage to el j 
Melek el Adel, 324, 326 ; is ' 
accused of procuring the assas- \ 
.sination of Conrad of Mont- 1 
ferrat, 333 ; prepares to march : 
upon Jerusalem, 340 ; captures i 
the caravan from Egypt, 342- ! 
346; retreats, 351, 352 ; negoti- i 
ates with Saladin, 354, 360 ; I 
relieves Jaffa, 368, 370 ; rides ' 
along the whole Saracen army, 
376 ; falls ill, 378 ; is supplied 
with fruit and snow by Saladin, 
379 ; makes peace, 384 ; tries 
to prevent Franks going to 
Jerusalem as pilgrims, 388 ; 
sails away, 393, 394 

Erzeroum, Lord of, 384 

Esh Shakif (Belfori), 142, 148, 
154 ; the Lord of, 148, 150-155; 
surrender of, 174 

Esh Shogr, 132 

Euphrates, 53, 334 

el Fakhwana, 165 

Fakhr ed Din Abd el Mesih (the 

Vizier), 74 
Falcon, a white, belonging to the 

King of France, 241 ; Richard 

L's falcons, 257 
el Fawar, 89, 91 
Felek ed Din, 341, 343, 344 
Felus, Merj el, 141 
La F^ve, 90 
Fiha, 132 

Fik (Aphek), the ascent to, 220 
Flanders, Philip, Count of, 241 
Fleet, Saladin's, destroyed at 

Tyre, 121, 122 
Fly-tower at Acre, siege of the, 

210-212, 215, 217 
Forbelet, 91 

France, King of, 14, 240, 253 
Frederick, Duke of Swabia, 212 
Frederick (Emperor Barbarossa), 

170, 182, 185 
Frederick IL, Emperor, 387 

Fiileh, 90, no 

Fulke L, King of Jerusalem, 56, 

Galatin (Jelediyeh), 341 

Gambison, or pourpoint, worn by 
Crusaders, 282 

Gamboison, 367 

Gaza, 358 

Geoffrey de Vinsauf, 183, 283^ 
284, 289, 290, 294, 300, 329, 341, 
351, 361,367,388 

Geoffrey de Lusignan, King Guy's 
brother, 113, 225, 356, 357 

Georgians, 384 

Germans, leader of the, 146; King 
of the, 182, 183, 212, 213 ; son 
of the King died before Acre, 
236, 237 

Geuk Su, river, 78, 170 

Gezer, battle at, 76 

Ghabagheh, 397 

Ghazza, taken by the Saracens, 

Giaour Dagh, 135 
Gibeon (el Jib), 360 
Gumishtikin, 68, 69. 72, 76 
Guy de Lusignan, King of Jeru- 
salem, taken prisoner by Sala- 
din at Hattin, 113 ; regains his 
liberty, 143 ; besieges Acre, 
153, 154, 156; is jealous of 
the Germans, 212 ; rode with 
King Richard on his march, 
282 ; fought at Arsuf, 290 ; Beha 
ed Din makes mistakes about 
him, 317 ; Henry of Cham- 
pagne acknowledged King of 
Jerusalem in his stead, 354 

Haifa, Richard L landed at, 35 ; 

Saladin took it, 116 ; el Melek 

el Adel sent ships to Acre from, 

I 234 ; Franks cross the river at, 

275 ; ceded by Saladin, 381 

Haji Yusuf Sihib el Mashtiib, 

Hajj road, the, 386 

Hamadan, Prince of, 98 

Hamah (Hamath) taken by Ni^ir 
ed Din, 47 ; Nur ed Din met 
his brother, Kotbed Din (Prince 
of Mosul), there in 1167, 51 ;. 
Izz ed Din defeated at the 



'Horns' of, by Saladin, 71; 
Saladin did not halt there on 
his way to 'Ain Jalud, 89 ; the 
Lord of, 190 ; besieged by 
Count Philip of Flanders, 241 ; 
mausoleum and college founded 
there in honour of its Lord, El 
Melek el Mozaffer Taki ed 
Din, 315 
Harenc, 76. See Harim 
Harim, 76, 109, 241 
Harran, near Seruj, 53 ; Seif ed 
Din gave it to Mozatfer ed Din 
(Kukburi) as a gift, 73 ; ' the 
city of Nahor,' 82 ; Saladin at, 
98 : deprives Mozaffer ed Din 
(Kukburi) of the castle of, 99 ; 
Saladin all but died there, 102 ; 
recovered, 103 ; Mozaffer ed 
Din Lord of, 190 ; the Sultan 
gave him the government of 
Arbela, and took Harran, etc., 
in exchange, 218 ; el Melek el 
Mansur asked for it, 333 ; Sala- 
din refused it to him, 334 
Harun er Rashid, his birthplace, 33 
Harzem, near Mardin, 85 
Hassan Ibn Barik, 309 
Hattin, battle of, 1 10- 1 1 5 ; Renaud 
deChatillonand King Guy taken 
prisoners, 42, 43 ; Mozaffer ed 
Din (Kukburi) fought there, y^; 
description of the battle, i lo-i 14 
Hebron, 337 

Henry, Count, of Champagne, 
marched upon Jaffa, 35 ; arrived 
at Acre with a great force, 197 ; 
at the battle of Arsiif, 290 ; 
gathered soldiers for the attack 
of Jerusalem, 346 ; tried to 
keep the French Crusaders in 
Palestine, 379 ; one of the 
Council which made peace with 
Saladin, 384, 385 
Henry VL, Emperor, 184, 213 
Henry II. ot England, 355 
Hekkar, Kurds from, 225 
Hesban (Heshbon), 97 
Hesi, Tell el, 337, 34i, 345. 
el Hisn (Nineveh), 61 
Hisn Keifa, 389 
Hisn Mansur, 78 
Holy Cross, 270, 271, 308, 309, 

Holy Sepulchre, church of the, 

239, 328, 335 
Horns, 56, 62. See Emesa 
Horns of Hamah, 71, 73 
Hosn el Akrad (Crac), 125, 126 
Hospital of St. John at Jerusalem, 

Hospitallers, Knights, their for- 
tress of Safed, 31 ; they fought 
with Amaury I. in Egypt, 51 ; 
their Grand Master slain at 
Hattin, no ; their chief taken 
prisoner, 113 ; all prisoners put 
to death by Saladin, 114; their 
chief negotiates, 263 ; accom- 
panied CcEur de Lion's march 
from Acre, 282 ; charged at 
Arsuf, 290 ; their great tower 
at Ascalon, 299 ; advised the 
rebuilding of Ascalon before 
attackingjerusalem, 328; owned 
a great part of the coast of 
Palestine, 354 ; gave their con- 
sent to the peace with Saladin, 

Hossfim ed Din, a warrior slain 

at el Aiadiya, 160 
Hossam ed Din Abu el Hija, a 

Kurdish emir, in command at 

Acre, 202. See Abu el Heja 
Hossam ed Din Bishara, Lord of 

Banias, 141, 224, 404 
Hossam ed Din Ibn Lajun, Lord 

of Nablus, 163, 224 
Hossam ed Din Lulu, Chamber- 
lain and Commander of the 

fleet at Acre, 209 
Hossam ed Din Sonkor el 'Alkh- 

lati, 156 
Hours, the appointed, for prayer 

according to the Mohammedan 

religion, 7, 2 1 
Huat (Howard), 381 
Hugh, Lord of Jibeil, 113 
Huleh, lake (waters of Merom), 1 1 5 
Humphrey of Toron, 42, 113, 139, 

288, 317 
Hunin, in Upper Galilee, 52 

Ibelin (Yebnah), the Lord of, 21, 

384, 385 
Ibn Laon, 78, 183, 184, 188-192 
Ibn el Mokaddem, 339, 386 
Ibn ez Zeki, 40, 405, 408 



Ibrahim Ibn Sherwa, Governor of 

Harim, 88 
Iconium, 77, 183, 186 
Imad ed Din, Lord of Sinjar and 

Aleppo, 28, 71, 81, 86-88, 180, 

190, 222, 224, 228 
Imad ed Din, son of Kara Arslan, 

99, 100 
Iron bridge, 135 
Isaac Angelus of Constantinople, 

186, 200 
Isabel, daughter of Amaury L, 

heiress of the kingdom of Jeru- 
salem, 317, 354 
Iskanderuna, 153 
Ism'ailiya, the assassins, 74 
Isma'iliyat, place called, 99 
Izz ed Din, Atabeg Prince of 

Mosul, 102 
Izz ed Din Ferrukh Shah, 74, 81 
Izz ed Din Jurdik, 13, 87, 89, 224, 

367-369, 379, 395 
Izz ed Din Kilij, yj 
Izz ed Din Mas'iid, brother of 

Seif ed Din, Prince of Mosul, 

70, 77, 224 

J'aber, on the Euphrates, 53 

Jaffa, Saladin marched to, 32 ; 
Henry of Champagne threa- 
tened, 35 ; is two or three long 
marches from Natrun, 36 ; 
Franks marched to, 294, 295 ; 
made expeditions from, 299 ; 
King Richard brought forces to, 
from Acre, and rebuilt it, 306 ; 
Arabs taken prisoners near it, 
340 ; Saladin's siege of, 361 
sgg^.j' its walls ' beaten down, 
365 ; King Richard relieves it, 
367-371 ; granted to the Franks, 
37^, 37 3] Saladin attacked King 
Richard at, 374-376 ; Saracens 
march upon, 379 ; Saladin gave 
it up to the Franks, 381 ; peace 
signed there, 384, 385 

Jaghjagha Su, 60 

el Jalut, 89 

Jaulan, the, 109 

Taweli, a memluk who had served 
Shirkoh, 89 

Jebel el Akra, 132 

Jebela, 125, 128, 137, 307 

Jebel Singar, 60 

Jelediyeh, six miles W. of Tell es 

Safi, 341 
Jemal ed Daula Ikbal, 402 
Jemal ed Din Farej, 379 
Jenin (En Gannim), 97 
Jerablus, on the Euphrates, 79 
Jerid, 64 

Jeihro's tomb, 113 
Jezirat Ibn Omar, 94-96, loi, 180, 

Jezreel, 90, 91 
el Jib, 360 
Jibeil, 113, 117, 124 
Jihum, 187 
Jisr el Ababneh, 293 
Jisr el Hadid, 135 
Jisr es Sennaba, in 
Jisr es Sidd, 1 11 
Joan, sister of Richard I., 253 
Jocelyn II. of Edessa, 82, 185 
Jokneam, 224, 276, 327 

Kadi el Fadel, 8, 391, 401, 402 

Kadi Mohi ed Din Ibn ez Zeki. 
See Ibn ez Zeki, 

Kahwana, 165 

Kaimas en Nejmi, el Tawashi, 
163, 366 

KaPat Baghras. See Baghras 

Kal'at el Harun, 132 

Kal'at el Hosn. See Crac des 

Kal'at el Melek at Acre, 158 

Kal'at el Mudik, 133 

Kal'at er Rum, on the Euphrates, 

Kal'at es Subeibeh, 153 

Kal'at es Sultanj 132 

Kaleh J'aber, 53 

Kalus, Merj el, 141 

Kara Arslan, 85 

Kara Hissar, 78, 88 

Karakush, one of Saladin's gene- 
rals, 107 

Karala el Yarukli, 399 

Kara Su, 38, 78, 135 

Kasimiyeh (Leontes) river, 144 

Kaukab el Hawa (Belvoir), de- 
scription, 25 ; held out after 
the battle of Hattin, 138 ; siege 
of, 122-124 ; taken by Saladin, 
139, 140 ; garrisoned by Sara- 
cens, 327 ; Saladin inspected 
it, 394 



Kazaghend, Persian word for 'mail 

shirt,' 367 ; Saladin's, 400 

Kefr Kenna, no 

Kefr Latha, 86 

Kefr Tab, 71 

Kefr Zimmar, loi 

el Keimiin, 224, 276, 327 

Kellasa, the, 406 

Keneh, 66 

Kerak, Melek el Adel, governor 
of, 25 ; Renaud de Chatillor, 
Lord of, 42 ; description of, 56; 
blockaded by Nur ed Din, 58 ; 
Saladin made an abortive ex- 
pedition against', 92 ; a second 
expedition by Saladin, 95-97 ; 
third expedition, 108; its Prince, 
Renaud, taken at Hattin, 113 ; 
surrendered to gain his liberty, 
1 39 ; given to el Melek el Adel, 
336 ; the road by, 344 ; Melek 
el Adel sent there, 390 ; in- 
spected the fortress, 397 

Kerkhani, 315 

el Kerz, the traitor, 65 

Kerzein, 86 

Khabur, province of, 83 

Khalif, the, 305, 391 

Khanazir. See Khanzir 

Khan Minyeh, 155 

Khanzir, part of a mangonel, 31, 

32, 139 
Kharruba, or Kharnuba, 28, 155, 

169, 224, 226, 227, 245 
Khelat (Akhlat on the shore of 

Lake Van), 16, 84, ico, 103, 

Khostekin el Jeraji, 344 
Khosterin Kosein, leader of the 

Hakhari Kurds, 225, 404 
Khurbet Malhah, 277 
el Khuweilfa (round cistern), 341, 

343, 345 
Kilij Arslan IL, Sultan of Roum, 

77-79,81,183, 186,187, 301,302 
King of England. See England, 

King of 
King of France (Philip IL), 240, 

241, 253, 270; (Louis VL), 

333; (Louis VII.), 355 
King of Jerusalem. See Guy de 

King of Persia, 305 
Kirkuk, 315 

Kisan, Tell, 214, 223, 231, 273 

Kishon, brook, 226, 275 

el Kisweh, 397 

Konia (Iconium), 77, 183, 186 

Koptos, on the Nile, 66 

Kosseir, 66 

Kotb ed Din en Nisabiiri, a 

learned doctor, 6 
Kotb ed Din, son of Nur ed Din, 

and Prince of Mosul, 51, 70, 

79, 163 (?) 
Kotb ed Din, son of Kilij Arslan, 

Kul'at et Melek, at .Acre, 158 
Kumeitera, 108 
Kus, on the Nile, 66 
el Kuseir, 89, 94 
Kuyunjik (Nineveh), 61 

Lachish, 337 

Ladder of Tyre, the, 153 

Laodicea, 125, 129, 130, 137, 207, 

Larissa (Cassarea near Apamea, 

on the Orontes), 190 
Larranda, 171, 188 
Latrun. See Natrun 
Leo IL of Armenia the Lesser, 

184, 187 
Leontes river, 144 
Lighiish, a brave officer, 292 
Louis VI., King of France, 333 
Louis VIII., King of France, 355 
Lubia, 112 
Lusignan, 35. See Guy and 

Geoffrey de 
Lydda, 300, 302, 303, 346, 359, 

3S1, 3S2 

Ma'arra, en Nu'man, 71, 333 
Maeander, 183 
Mail shirt, 367 
Maimun el Kosri, 404 
Malatia, Lord of, 301 
Malmistra, 42 
Manazgerd, 29 
Manbij. See Membij 
Mangonels, 57, 59, 67, 72, 96, 

1 16-122, 130, 138, 139, 202-204, 

206, 215, 243-249, 255, 288, 361, 

362 ; description of, 31 
Mansio Platanus, 132 
el Mansur, el Melek, 377, 378, 




Manuel Comnenos, Emperor of 

Constantinople, 42, 51, 57, 317 
Maragha in Azerbijan, 10 
Mar'ash, 47, 63 
Mardin, 85, 99, 109 
Maria, grand-niece of Manuel 

Comnenos, 51 
Marquis of Montferrat, Conrad, 

144, 207, 228, 254, 267, 301, 

392, 328-333, 353 
Mar Samwil, 374, 377, 390 
Massacre of Moslems at Acre, 

Masud, Prince of Mosul, 181 
Maudiid, 180, 219 
Meidan el Akhdar, 86, 87 
Mejahed Sheikhah, 285 
Mejdel Yaba, 278, 293, 338, 381 
Mejed ed Din, Ibn ed Daya, 58 
Mejed ed Din, son of Ferrukh 

Shah, and Lord of Baalbec, 

Mejed ed Din Helderi, 377 
Melasgerd, 29 
el Melek el Adel, Saladin's brother, 

el Melek el Afdal. See Afdal 
el Melek el Mozaffer, Lord of 

Hamah, 208. See Mozaffer 
el Melek es Saleh, 67-79. See 

el Mellaha, 277, 279 
Membej, 47, 53, 74, 77, 190, 333 
Merj 'Ayun, 33, 148, 150, 175 
Merj el Berghuth, on Mount Her- 

mon, 141 
Merj el Felus, on Mount Harmon, 

Merj es Soffer, 107 
Merziman Chai, 185 
el Meshtub, 348, 371, 394, 395 
Metamir, grain-pits, 42 
Miafarekin, 10 1 
Mihrani, Kurds from, 225 
Minya (Khan Minyeh), 155 
Mirabel, 338 
Misr, 47, 48, 64 
Missis, 187 

el Mo'azzem Turan Shah, 402 1 

el Mobaraka, the blessed spring, | 

72, 106 
Mo'ezz ed Din, surnamed Sinjar j 

Shah, Lord of Jezirat Ibn Omar, i 

219, 224 ! 

M'oin ed Din Kaisar Shah, Lord 

of Malatia, son of Kilij Arslan, 

301, 302 
MojTihed ed Din Berenkash, 163 
Mojelli, Emir, 163, 167 
Mons Casius, 132 
Montferrat, Marquis of, 144. See 

Conrad and Marquis 
Montjoie, 374, 390 
Montreal, 56 ; fall of, 143. See 

Mopsuestia, 187 
Mosul, 28, 51, 60-62, 77, 79, 84, 

94, 98-102, 171, 255, 292 
Mount Tabor, 90 
el Moweiyed Marud, el Melek, 377 
Mozaffer ed Din (Kukburi), son 

of Zain ed Din Ali, created 

Lord of Arbela on his brother's 

death, 73, 81, 218 
Mozaffer, el Melek, Taki ed Din, 

Lord of Hamah, 163, 190, 208, 
■ 220, 305, 314 
Mozaffer ed Din, son of Zein ed 

Din, 80, 156, 163, 177, 190 
el Muezzer, city of, 218 
el Muneiba, 400 
el Muneitera, 50, 51 
Muristan, the, 360 
Musard, Mount, 158 
Myos Hormos, 66 
Mygdonius, 60 

Nablus, taken by the Saracens, 
97, 116 ; Lord of, 163 

Nahr el Aswad, 78, 135 

Nahr el Azrak, 78 

Nahr el F^lik, 286, 289 

Nahr el Halu, 115 

Nahr Iskanderuneh, 284 

Nahr el Kasab, 284, 285, 287 

Nahr el Mefjir, 283 

Nahr N'amein, 226 

Nahr Thathar, 60 

Naira, 109 

JVakus, the, 23 

Nasr ed Din, son of Taki ed Din, 

en Nasr ed Din Illah Abu el 
Abbas Ahmud, Khalif of Bagh- 
dad, 171 

Nasri dirhem, 7 

Natrun, 32, 35, 36, 303, 340, 341, 
376, 390 




Nazareth, 28, 38, 1 10, 1 16, 224, 381 

Nebi Samwil, 374, 377, 390 

Nebi Shu'aib, 113 

en Newakir, 153 

Nicephorium, 60 

Nisabur, 6 

Nishapur, district, 6 

Nisiba, 72, 82, 104 

Nisibin, 60 

Nur ed Din Ibn Zenghi, 47, 50, 

60, 61, 64 
Nusherawan ez Zerzani, a Kurdish 

Emir, 404 

Old man of the mountain, 333 

Omar Khayyam, 6 

Orfa, 82. See Edessa 

el Orima, 127 

Ortokid dynasty, 3, 19, 85 

Osrhoene, 83 

Oultre Jourdan, 42 

Palmyra, 57 

Peace, treaty of, between the 

Franks and Saladin, 385 
Pehlevan, 83, 100, loi, 103 
Persia, King of, 305 
Philip, Count of Flanders, 241 
Philoteras portus, 66 
Platanus, 132 
Prayers, Friday, among Moslems, 

7. See also 13 
Pyramus, 187 

er Rafamiya (Raphanera), 71 
Rakka, on the Euphrates, 60, 81 
Ram, battering, 214-216 
Ramlah, 14, 75, 117, 295, 300, 

313, 381, 382 
Raoul Coggeshale, 113 
Ras el 'Ain (Mirabel), 98, 338 
Ras el Ma, 57, 225 
Rati, weight, 216, 278 
Ravendal (ir Rawendan), 104 
Rawendan, 104 

Raymond of Tripoli, 111-113, 282 
Redwan palace, 403 
Renaud de Chatillon, 42, 75, 113- 

115. 317 
Rhagae, ancient name of Rhey, 33 
Rhey, near Teheran, 33 
Rhupon II., Baron of Lesser 

Armenia, 78 
Richard I. See England, King of 

Roche Taillie, 289 

er Roha, 82 

Round cistern, 341, 343, 348 

Rum Kaleh, 185, 189 

es Sabbaghin, 276 

Sabek ed Din, Lord of Sheiser, 

190, 399i 403 
S'ad ed Din (Gumishtikin), 68 
S'ad ed Din Mfis'ud, 403 
Safed, note on, 31 ; taken by 

Saladin, 138, 139 
Safi, Tell es, 341 
Sahel, the, 55 
Sahyun, 130 
Sajur, river, 79 
Salasi Kuleh, 58 
Salemiya, 333 

Salt, fortress beyond Jordan, 336 
Salt river, 284, 288, 289 
Saltus Hieraticus, the capital of 

Gilead, 336 
Samosata, 29, 73 

Saone, a fortress of the Hos- 
pitallers, taken by Saladin, 130- 

Saruj, 82 
Scandalion, 153 
Seffuria, no 
Seffurieh, 281 
Self ed Din Ali Ibn Ahmed el 

Meshtub, leader of the Kurds 

from Mihrani and Hakkar, 225 
Seif ed Din Bektimor, Lord of 

Khelat, 384 
Seif ed Din Ghazi Ibn Maudud 

Ibn Zenghi, 180 
Seif ed Din, Lord of Mosul, 61, 

70-72, 74 ; his death, yy ; his 

son, 180, 219 
Seif ed Din Ali el Meshtub, 260, 

348, 394, 395 
Seif ed Din Yazkoj, 163, 227, ^yy 
Selef, river, 188 
Selefke, 188 
Seleucia, 170 
Senja, river, 79 
es Sennabra, 1 1 1 
Sepulchre, the Church of the Holy, 

^39) 335» 338. SeeAnastasis 
Serag, 53 

Seraj (Serug, Gen. xi. 20), 53 
Sermaniya, 133 
Sermin, 133 



Shadhbakht Ali, 68 

Shahanshah, 218 

Shakif Arniin, 141, 142, 150-155, 

174, 3^7 
Shani, galleys, 67 
Sharon, Plain of, 176 
Shawen, 46, 47, 53 ; his death, 54 
Shechem, 97 
Shefr'am, 218 
Shefr Amr, 226 
Sheherzur, city, 218 
Sheizer, 190, 386 

Shems ed Daula (Turan Shah), 75 
Shems ed Din Ibnel Mokaddam, 

Shems ed Din (Senkor), 404 
Shems ed Din, the Treasurer, 367 
Sheref ed Din, son of Kotb ed 

Din, 84 
Shihor, 207 
Shirkoh, Asad ed Din, 4, 5, 13, 

49, I03' 377 
Shirkuh Ibn Bakher, the Kurd, 

Shobek (Montreal), 56, 63, 89, 

113, 114; capitulated to Sala- 

din, 143 ; granted to el Melek 

el Adel, 336 
Esh Shugr, 132 

Sicily, 310 ; Kin? William of, 154 
Sidon, taken by Saladin, 116 ; the 

Lord of, 174,321,325, 329 
Siege of Acre, 143-182, 201-206, 

Siege of Alexandria, 66, 67 
Siege of Damietta, 56-59 
Singara (Sinjar), 60, 61 
Sinjar, 60, 61, 70, 81, 84 ; troops 

from, 163 ; the Lord of, 28, 

171, 224 
Sinjar Shah, Lord of Jezirat Ibn 

Omar, 102, 171, 180 
Sinnabri?, in 
Soleim er Kazi, 33 
Someisat, 218, 333, 334 
Sonkor the Scarred (el Meshtub), 

Sonkor (Shems ed Din), 404 
Subbarin, 276 
Sufi, 39 

Suhraverdi, 10, 39 
Sumeisat (Samosata), 63, 7;^ 
Swabia, Duke of, 212 
Syria, 25, e^ saep. 

Tabor, Mount, 90, no 

Tabriz, 39, 83 

Tadmor, 57 

Taj el Moliik, 87 

Taki ed Din, Saladin's nephew, 
15, 190, 218, 219, 305 ; his 
death, 314 ; his son, 377 

Tarida, transports, 67 

Tarsus, 183, 184 

Tekrit, 4, 60 

Tekua, 351 

Tell el 'Aladiya, 155, 160, 245, 
247, 259, 273 

Tell el Ajjul, 28, 176, 223 

Tell el Asawir, 276-278 

.Tell Ashterah, 58, 109, no 

Tell Basher, 58, 86, 224 

Tell el Fodiil, 243 

Tell el Fokhkhar, 156 

Tell el Hajl, 28 

Tell el Hesy, 337, 345 

Tell Jezer, 325, 326 

Tell KeimCm, 276 

Tell Khaled, 'j'] 

Tell Kisan, 155, 214, 223, 231, 


Tell Kurdaneh, 226 

Tell el Mosalliyin, 156 

Tell es Safia, 340, 341 

Tell es Sultan, 103 

Tell Tesil, 109 

Tell ez Zelzela, 277 

Templars. Knights, 51, no, 
115, 191, 290,328,354, 385 

Temple, Marshal of the, no 

Tesil, 109 

Thapsacus, 60 

Tiberias, in. 116, 154, 220; 
Lady of, 282 ; the Lord of, 384 

Tibnin (Toron), 116, 155; skir- 
mish at, 148, 149 

Timur, 63 

Tizin, 125, 128 

Togril, Sultan, 316 

et Tor (Mount Tabor), 90 

Toron, 116, 155; skirmish 
148, 149 ; Humphrey of, 
113, 288, 317 ; Toron of 
Knights, 32 

Torontai, 381, 382 

Tortosa, 127, 143 

Tower of Flies, at Acre, 210-212, 

Towers at Acre, 268 

27 — 2 






Tripoli, 114, 209, 237, 283 ; Lord 
of, 114, 386 

Tubania, 90 

Tiira, six miles S. of Cairo, 49 

Turbessel (Tell Basher), 58 

Turcopoles, 273 

Turkoman's well, 73 

Turks, 49 

Tyre, Franks assemble at, 25 ; 
abortive siege of by Saladin, 
120-122 ; King Guy marches 
to, 144; Conrad of. 212, 213, 
267, 332 ; his murder, 333 

Tyrian dmar, 7 

Urumiah, 316 

Vinsauf, Geoffrey de, 156, 183, 

225, 273, 283, 284, 290, 300, 328, 
341, 351, 367,388 
Vitry, Jacques de, no 

Wady el Ghazal, 49 

Wady Halzun, 227 

Wady Jehennum, 118 

Wady Waleh, 97 

el Waleh (Wady Waleh), 97 

White falcon, belonging to the 

King of France, 241 
William, King of Sicily, 253 - 
Wooden bridge, near Damascus, 


el Yarukiya, 53 

Vazur, 32, 137, 314, 361, 371, 373 
Yebnah (Ibelin), 21 ; taken by 
the Saracens, 117; Saladin 
halted there, 296 ; not restored 
at the peace, 381 
Yemen, 64, 75 

ez Zafer, el Melek, Lord of Bosra, 
Saladin's son, 224, 347, 396, 

Zaher ed Din, brother of Doctor 
'Aisa, 167 

Zaher ed Din Ibn el Bolenkeri, 

ez Zaher, Saladin's son. Prince of 
Aleppo, II, 170, 190, 208,224, 
359, 361, 364, 367, 369, 375» 
378, 385, 392, 393, 395-397 

Zein ed Din, AH Kuchuk, Lord of 
Arbela, his son, 51, 74; his son 
and his slave, Abu Mansur, 80 ; 
his son, 177; his arrival at Acre, 
182 ; his death, 218 

Zenghi, Imad ed Din, 5, 47, 49, 
60 ; his grandson, 219 

Zenobia, 38 

Zer'ain (Jezreel), 91 

Zered Rhana, 263 

Zeugma, 72 

ez Zib (Achzib or Ecdippa), 154, 

, 307 

Zulf Endaz, 232, 233 



DS Palestine Pilgrims' Text 

102 Society, London 

P2 The library